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«return to newslistCensus Countdown Kicks-OffLocal foundations join in to support an accurate count

Albuquerque, New Mexico | Apr 1, 2019 – 

A year from today, the 2020 Census will officially start. Completed once every 10-years, this massive undertaking strives to count every resident of the United States. While many people mistakenly see the census process as a mere headcount of US residents, the census has far-reaching implications. For example, according to a 2018 study by George Washington University census-derived data was used to distribute more than $850 billion to states in 2016 alone. Ensuring New Mexico receives its fair share of those funds relies on an accurate count of all our residents.

Unfortunately, New Mexico’s unique demographics and geography make it the most difficult state to count. In 2010, New Mexico had the second lowest response rate in the US and nearly 2% of our state population was not counted. For the past 10 years, our communities haven’t been getting their fair share of dollars for schools, hospitals, public transit and social support systems. A similar undercount in 2020 could mean a loss of $1.5 billion in federal funding to New Mexico over a 10-year period.

A group of 11 New Mexico based foundations have joined together under the name New Mexico Counts 2020 to support efforts to ensure every New Mexico resident is counted. These organizations recognize that with billions of dollars on the line for critical federal programs for children, youth, economic development, housing New Mexico cannot afford to fail.

With one year left to prepare, New Mexico Counts 2020 is inviting tribal partners and nonprofit organizations from around the state to apply for funds to support efforts to engage hard-to-reach populations in the state in advance of the official census start on April 1, 2020.

“An effort like this extends beyond political and geographic boundaries,” said Randy Royster, CEO of the Albuquerque Community Foundation. “Ensuring that New Mexico is counted will require that elected officials, nonprofit professionals, the business community, and residents from urban, rural and tribal communities from across New Mexico work together.”

New Mexico Counts 2020 has assembled over $700,000 in seed funding to support efforts to reach hard-to-count communities. “These funds will help nonprofit and tribal organizations throughout the state conduct outreach to ensure that all New Mexicans can participate in the process and that all residents will be counted,” said Allan Oliver, Executive Director of Thornburg Foundation.

Organizations interested in supporting these efforts can access a copy of the Request for Proposals at https://nmcounts2020.org/resources/. Proposals are due April 29th at 5:00 p.m.

New Mexico Counts 2020 is an outreach campaign supported by a collaborative of philanthropic organizations to help ensure that all New Mexicans are counted in the 2020 Census, especially in the most hard-to-count and reach communities. Participants include Albuquerque Community Foundation, Con Alma Health Foundation, Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico, JF Maddox Foundation, McCune Charitable Foundation, New Mexico Community Foundation, Santa Fe Community Foundation, Taos Community Foundation, Thornburg Foundation, United Way of Central New Mexico, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.