Community Engagement for Equity

Year Complete: 2019
Gran Category: Equity Pilot Initiative
Grant Amount: $51,981
Local Government: City of Las Cruces, NM
Local Foundation: Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico

Project Purpose

To record video narratives of community members to help decision makers and others explore the relationship between data and the qualitative stories of marginalized residents.

Key Lessons Learned

Lessons learned about tools and tactics through the project that other sustainability directors could use to advance their work.

Videos are powerful tools, but the process is incredibly time-consuming. It is important to utilize culturally sensitive interviewers, editors, and videographers to create a trusting atmosphere.

Lessons for developing a collaborative process between a local government sustainability director and local place-based foundation(s).

Each organization has institutional power and resources that can constrain one’s ability to develop ongoing relationships with community members. It is important to be clear about roles, expectations, and timetables with all parties concerned.

Additional Information and Resources

This project provided a tool to foster discussions about marginalized peoples’ lives, their challenges and their resiliency. It is anticipated that it will provokes discussion, reflection and actions to ameliorate inequities. More information about the City of Las Cruces Sustainability initiatives can be found here.