NM Kids at the Crossroads: Save the Date

A big thank you to everyone who contributed to and participated in our Northern New Mexico KIDS COUNT Conference. It was a great success and we have more knowledge and action steps for moving forward.

Now comes the push for our big annual KIDS COUNT Conference!

Our statewide conference will be Monday, June 25 at the Embassy Suites in Albuquerque. Reserve your space here.

Check back for more details!

Want your organization to sponsor the conference? Contact our Development Director Farah Council at 505-361-1287 for options and benefits.

Join us at the state capitol to make sure kids count!

Join us in celebrating children and youth as we release our 2017 New Mexico KIDS COUNT Data Book on the first day of the legislative session. Bring the kids for a first-hand learning experience.

CCYD eVoices event pic
What: Celebrating Children and Youth Day and 2017 New Mexico KIDS COUNT Data Book release
When: Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018, 8am to noon
Where: The state capitol rotunda, Santa Fe

8 am: Advocacy training begins. Learn the ins and outs of talking with your state legislators about the issues that are important to you. This training is free and breakfast burritos will be served (both the training and the burritos are on a first-come-first-served basis).
9 am: Meet with your legislators and visit table displays.
10 am: Press conference for the release of 2017 New Mexico KIDS COUNT Data Book and the annual “State of the Children and Youth” TEDx-style talks given by local youth.
Noon: Enjoy pizza (on a first-come-first-served basis).

Hope to see you there!

Join us for food advocacy workshops

Advocacy workshop-Food security logo

How Proposed State & Federal Tax Policies May Harm Your Work


These advocacy workshop are for food bank and food pantry operators in the Albuquerque and Santa Fe areas, as well as community leaders, and organizations focused on advocating for food access and food security.

Join us to learn:

  • What the policy threats are around the proposed reinstatement of a tax on food and the removal of nonprofit gross receipts tax exemptions.
  • What the dollar impacts are of those proposed policies on food banks and food pantries and the clients they serve.
  • What to do about it and ways to engage staff, community members, and stakeholders to advocate for your communities.

The workshops are:

  • Albuquerque: Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, 10am-noon, at Roadrunner Food Bank, 5840 Office Blvd. NE, Albuquerque. Download a flyer for this event here.
  • Santa Fe: Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, 2pm-4pm, at The Food Depot, 1222 A Siler Road, Santa Fe. Download a flyer for this event here.

To RSVP or get for more information, contact Armelle Casau, 505-361-1279

Thanks to all who joined us for the Las Cruces workshop!

Hosted by: NM Voices for Children
Partners: Roadrunner Food Bank of New Mexico, Ngage New Mexico, The Food Depot, and McCune Charitable Foundation


Happy Holidays!


Join Our Team!

We are seeking a full-time Research and Policy Analyst to conduct research and advocacy on public policies that help lift families out of poverty. This analyst is expected to be familiar with quantitative and qualitative research methods. Candidates must have a willingness to travel throughout New Mexico to build and strengthen partnerships, and engage communities of color.

2017 NMVC Staff -square-cropNew Mexico Voices for Children is a 30-year old nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the economic status, well-being, and racial and ethnic equity of New Mexico’s children, families, and communities in the areas of health, education, and economic security by promoting public policies through credible research and effective advocacy.

The ideal candidate will have a demonstrated knowledge of public policies that advance racial and ethnic equity in New Mexico. To effectively accomplish this work, candidates should have a master’s degree, an ability to work collaboratively, and willingness to travel throughout the state.

Download the full job description here (pdf)

Please send questions or resumes to:
James Jimenez, Executive Director

Deadline for resume submission is December 15, 2017

Kids Count goes on the road to southern NM

by Sylvia Ulloa, New Mexico In Depth
Nov. 10, 2017

Amber Wallin, Kids Count director for New Mexico Voices for Children, flashed up a photo on a screen during her presentation to childhood advocates and elected leaders in Las Cruces for the first Southern New Mexico Kids Count conference on Thursday. Anyone of a certain age would recognize the black and white photo of a motley bunch of kids in baseball uniforms: The Bad News Bears.

Wallin said people in New Mexico were tired of being those Bears, tired of hearing the same old stats: 49th in child well-being, 50th in education, 49th in community and family. Some were tuning out, becoming numb, or throwing up their hands because it didn’t seem like there was anything they could do to change the situation.

What is her answer to that? “Policy matters,” she said.

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez in 2013 accepted the Medicaid expansion and the result of that is that the state has climbed in the rankings on health: 37th overall, less than half the number of uninsured children in 2015 compared with 2010, half the number of teens who abuse alcohol or drugs in that same period, and slightly fewer child and teen deaths.

“We’re focusing on telling stories about the good things happening, and also talking from a solutions-based perspective,” she said.

She said that in the past five years, 4,000 more children have gotten access to New Mexico PreK, and 4,000 more families have been served by home visiting programs, which support new parents, lead to more well-child visits and have shown the highest return on investment according the the Legislative Finance Committee.

With a ranking of 49, there is a huge need for solutions.

James Jimenez, director of NM Voices for Children, and Wallin said the numbers are just the start of the conversation. They brought the Kids Count Conference to southern New Mexico for the first time at the invitation of Ngage New Mexico, a local education nonprofit, because they have been wanting to get closer to communities across the state.

Getting people involved at the local level is how to incorporate cultural values and customize solutions to tackle the grim indicators Kids Count tracks, Jimenez said. NM Voices’ next step is to do some of what Doña Ana County is doing, he said, “talking to the people in our communities. We know what the solutions are.”

Also at the conference were elected leaders from southern New Mexico, including Las Cruces City Councilors Kasandra Gandara and Gill Sorg, County Commissioner Billy Garrett, state Reps. Nathan Small, Doreen Gallegos and Joanne Ferrary, and Sen. Bill Soules. Several spoke on a panel about early childhood issues.

“We need to keep the eye on the ball,” said Sorg. “And in this case the ball is poverty. And the way to fix that is education, education and more education.”

Lori Martinez, deputy director of Ngage NM, who moderated the discussion, urged residents to reach out to their representatives, to talk to them about what they think New Mexico needs to do to improve the lives of children in the state.

“We want you to engage with your elected officials. That’s the point of this conference,” she said.

Copyright 2017, New Mexico In Depth (http://nmindepth.com/2017/11/10/kids-count-goes-on-the-road-to-southern-nm/)

Save the Date!

SNM KC conference logoWe’re partnering with Ngage New Mexico to present the inaugural Southern New Mexico KIDS COUNT Conference on Thursday, November 9, 2017, 8am-2pm, at the Las Cruces Convention Center, 680 E. University Ave., Las Cruces.

Among the speakers will be Nick Johnson, Senior Vice President, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, who will speak about how the national landscape may impact New Mexico.

Get more info and register here.

Did you attend our 2017 KIDS COUNT Conference in Albuquerque?
Check out photos from that event on our Flickr page.