The Center has received funding for its 2016 work from several major foundations. Kellogg Foundation awarded the Center a two-year grant to continue its development of cooperatives among underserved communities in Bernalillo County. The McCune Foundation also has provided a grant to help the Center continue creating cooperatives across New Mexico. And the Candelaria Fund has provided a matching grant for cooperative development in rural communities across New Mexico. We are deeply grateful to the support of these foundations! We expect to receive more funding from other foundations, government agencies and individual donors throughout the year.
Bueno Para Todos Cooperative Launches!
Thanks to an economic development grant from San Miguel County, CODECE has helped organize a new organic farming cooperative in the Villanueva Valley in San Miguel County. The cooperative will plant its first ever organic crops in late spring, 2016 at multiple sites owned by individual members of the cooperative. CODECE is helping identify markets for the organic produce expected to be grown this season; providing farm plans with succession planting schedules; and providing a master farmer to provide ongoing technical assistance throughout the season. CODECE also provided a $10,000 greenhouse to the new cooperative to permit its farmers to extend the growing season and increase their income.
New Collaboration With RFK Charter High School Begins!
The Center is working with the Robert F. Kennedy Charter High School in Albuquerque’s South Valley to launch a farming cooperative among RFK students who have expressed an interest in organic farming. This year, the Center is providing a one-acre farm site for use by RFK student apprentices. The Center is providing farm plans, markets and instruction to RFK students. RFK has also assigned a farmer to help the students learn farming.
CSC Acquires Tractor, Implements & Greenhouses for Farm Coops!
The Center has purchased a farm tractor for shared use by the emerging coops in the mid-Rio region. The tractor is used to plow, disk and create furrows on the various farm sites used by the numerous farm coops already up and running in the mid-Rio Grande Region. Shared use of farm tractors and implements is part of the economy of scale the Center provides to its emerging farm cooperatives. CODECE was also able to purchase 8 100’x30’ greenhouses to provide to several of our cooperatives. In all, the Center will provide more than $150,000 in infrastructure for emerging cooperatives in 2016.
César Chávez Event a Huge Success!
¡Sí Se Puede! The Center sponsors the annual Recuerda a César Chávez Event in Albuquerque. This year, more than 1,000 people attended the César Chávez Festival at the National Hispanic Cultural Center on March 26, while nearly 400 students participated on March 25 in a day of service in honor of Chávez at Sánchez Farms in Albuquerque’s South Valley.