Healing Our Communities Forum Meeting On Thursday Evening

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Over 80 people attending Thursday's event at the Santa Claran Hotel. VDP photo

Healing Our Communities Forum Meeting On Thursday Evening

ESPAÑOLA —Thursday night the city of Espanola, the offices of Senators Tom Udall Martin Heinrich and Congressman Ben Ray Lujan hosted the sixth annual Northern New Mexico Healing Our Communities summit at the Santa Claran Hotel.

The evening began with opening remarks from Mayor Alice Lucero and comments from the Northern New Mexico Implementation Team (NNMIT) chairman Herman Silva. Santa Clara Pueblo Governor Chavaria also spoke and gave the opening prayer.

Students from throughout the valley performed a skit that expressed the difficulty young people often have in dealing with drugs and dysfunctional home life.

Ane Romero, from Senator Heinrich’s staff facilitated the activities and group discussion. the 80 people attending worked together to try to answer community questions regarding the root cause of drug problems and addiction in the community. Specific questions that they worked to address included:

  • >Where we as individuals get support services?
  • >What support services are needed?
  • >What do you want to see done?
  • >How will the community know things have changed?
  • >What are the strengths we as individuals can contribute toward the end goals on this issue?
  • >What policy suggestions will help contribute to the larger issue of healing our communities?

Sponsors of the event included the offices of Senator Heinrich, Senator Udall, Congressman Lujan, the city of Espanola, Espanola public schools, Santa Clara Development Corporation and the Northern New Mexico Implementation Team.
An all-day youth summit addressing the same issues will begin at 8:30 a.m. Friday. Congressman Ben Ray Lujan is scheduled to attend and participate with the region’s youth.

See below for more images from the event.