What can 26 high school students and 6 teachers do to make a difference? Pick up a paint brush!
Last week, Community Learning Network (CLN), a New-Mexico-born educational 501(c) 3 non-profit organization based in the historic Guadalupe District of Sant Fe, brought 26 visiting high school students from Archbishop Mitty High School in San Jose, California, to help restore the murals in Louis Montãno Park.
It was magical and we have included pictures below!
In kind with CLN’s mission of “building community through real-life learning,” students met with the original artist Carlos Cervantes, and learned about the history of the region first-hand, from his stories and art. Thanks to the “Love Where We Live” TM initiative, CLN is working to revitalize community connections through service learning, experiential education, and youth ambassador training...and is collaborating with the Santa Fe Association of REALTORS, the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Fe/Del Norte, the Historic Guadalupe District Homeowners’s Association, the City of Santa Fe, and the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission to repaint and refurbish the existing murals in the small pocket park between Alto street and the Santa Fe River known as Louis Montãno Park.
Even more exciting, local youth from the Boys and Girls Club are scheduled to paint next, so stop by on Wednesday afternoons this month to see the transformation (and the fun) for yourself!
Meanwhile, eager to pick up a paint brush and add your touch to the project?
A Neighborhood Picnic and Community Day will be held in the Louis Montano Park on Saturday, June 1, 2017, from 1-3pm (across from the Alto Street Boys and Girls Club of Santa Fe/Del Norte).
Eager to Help?
You can also make a tax-deductible donation to the project that will provide a stipend for the original muralist at http://www.communitylearningnetwork.org/montano-park-mural-restoration.html And, stay tuned for updates, information, and photos of the project on the webpage above.
We are thrilled to welcome back one of our Fordham alumni as a summer intern, Victoria Pitz!
From Victoria - "I'm a junior at Fordham University in New York City and will pursue
a career as a music therapist and writer. In May of 2016, I participated in Fordham's Global
Outreach program which brought me to New Mexico/the Navajo Nation. Since then I've been
enthralled with hiking/exploring in the southwest, learning about native cultures, and sharing
stories with others. Being that my previous trip carved a special place in my heart, I couldn't
help but reach out to Jennifer upon reading an article she posted about "a calling to return" to the
"Land of Enchantment." I am excited to be returning to New Mexico with two of my closest friends
to work, live, explore and most importantly share stories with New and old faces. Forever
thankful for this outstanding organization and for introducing me to my true passion, hands-on real-
If you have participated in any of our previous learning immersion programs and would like to return as a fly-in intern, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also welcome virtual interns who are available and eager to help long distance!
There is still space and even a few partial scholarships for anyone interested in joining the summer program in Northern New Mexico July 23 through August 3, 2017. This 12-day intensive focuses on ecological design, natural farming, seed saving, traditional food and nutrition. alternative energies, earth-building, and more. Indigenous People's registration fee is $200, although partial scholarships are still available. To learn more, visit www.tnafa.org or contact Clayton Brascoupe at email@example.com. PS - if you cannot attend but would like to sponsor someone else to attend, contact Clayton Brascoupe to make a donation or set up a sponsorship. Please share this info with anyone you think might be interested!
Meet Alexandra Marshall who is joining us this spring from San Antonio. Texas.. Founder of FreeSpiritPresss.com, Alex is a talented website designer and creative spirit with a love for wellness, travel, and web design. Stay tuned to see how she works her creative magic! We are grateful for her good spirit and appreciate the talent she brings to our team. We look forward to her help with the Tierra Encantada "Love Where We Love" Tell It Like It Is Youth Media Team pilot program with local students, as well as Media classes she will be offering at Make Santa Fe. In the meantime, check out her website at www.freespiritpress.com
Carly Gordon returned to New Mexico this spring. She first visited as a high school student with Saint Patrick Saint Vincent High School from Vallejo, California. As she noted, on her visit, she "immediately fell in love." Deeply moved, the longing to return was irresistible. Now a college student in her sophomore year at Howard University in Washington, DC, Carly is double-majoring in math and mechanical engineering. We are honored she came back to intern with us, and we are blessed she is part of our life-long learning community.
By the way, we love to hear from alumni. Feel free to share some stories by email or if you feel that irresistible calling to return, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our journey together this winter was far beyond words. Simple yet deep, we shared a week of profound connection. A rare opportunity for restoration and reflection. Special thanks to Stonehill University for their commitment to cultivating students of integrity, as well as intelligence, and to a group of students who have forever left their mark on our hearts. As noted by one of the students" First, I want to thank you again for coordinating such a wonderful experience for our group. This was my third HOPE trip through Stonehill, and it was by far the most organized and most meaningful for me. ...I still can’t quite describe why I felt such deep emotions... So far, I’ve determined that it is a result of trying to absorb as much knowledge and wisdom as I possibly could, being in the presence of a sacred space much different than any back home, and finally slowing down enough to fully appreciate the company of those around me. " And as another student wrote, " I found peace within myself. It was something that I did not expect would happen and I am very grateful that it did." We also agree with the valuable words of advice from Stonehill professor and staff advisor, Warren Dahlin, " Hold on tight to these memories. They will make you all stronger for years to come."
If you have been on a journey with us, did the experience enhance your understanding of yourself or change your awareness of life or path in the world? We would love to hear your some of your thoughts and reflections as time has passed since you were here with us.. Feel free to email us anytime at email@example.com
I am sitting here at the airport waiting for a flight, reflecting on life and smiling quietly.... today is Community Learning Network's birthday!
It has been an amazing and busy year, and my heart is full with gratitude and appreciation for so many blessings, so many inspiring people, and so many meaningful things to tend. I won't go into all the details now, but for the curious, please do browse the link below to our Birthday Page to see what we have been up to...plus a peek at what we are brewing - with the sidenote that I am SURE I have left some things out, but it is still staggering what can be accomplished by a small group with dedication, passion, and heart. Grateful to all who have made this local nonprofit endeavor possible.
Visit our Birthday Page, and hope you enjoy the surprise present for you at the top!
There is a special bit of inspiration there for you (Thank You Tim McGraw!) and a few highlights from last year. Your encouragement and support are deeply appreciated, and we could not continue our work without it. For anyone inspired, we are grateful for donations of any amount, and tax-deductible gifts can be made online or by mail (see our Birthday page for details.)
All in all, happy to be celebrating an amazing year,
and wishing everyone a nourishing holiday season!
Jennifer Case Nevarez
Community Learning Network
"Building stronger communities through real-life learning"
Community Learning Network submitted the initial proposal for Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico to join the national TechHire initiative last spring. TechHire is a national campaign to train the workforce of tomorrow and connect Americans with well-paying technology jobs. On December 1st, Community Learning Network won national recognition from the White House and is leading the TechHIre Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico initiative. The project aims to support Tech training for more than 500 community members by 2020 in 13 counties in northern New Mexico while also promoting Tech outreach, camps, workshops, employment opportunities, and business development. To learn more about Tech education and outreach efforts, visit the website Community Learning Network launched last spring at www.nmtechworks.com.
This Saturday, October 1, 2016, a Neighborhood Picnic and Community Day in
Celebration of the Louis Montano Park Project in the Historic Guadalupe District will be held in the Louis Montano Park from 1-3pm across from the Alto Street Boys and Girls Club of Santa Fe/Del Norte.
Neighbors have been asked to bring lawn chairs and lunch to enjoy an afternoon of getting to know each other, sharing ideas on other ways to improve the park, learning about the historic neighborhood, painting the base coat for the reading chair, and celebrating where
On Wednesday, September 7, 2016, a free library was placed at the Alto Street entrance to the park decorated by a local artist thanks to Whole Foods, the Literacy Volunteers of Santa
Fe, and a local charity, Green One Design. The new free library has been stocked with books and the Santa Fe Association of REALTORS® has agreed to continue to stock and replenish the library with a focus on children’s books. Students from the Alto Street Boys and Girls Club will assist in completing the reading chair installation by designing and painting it on Friday, October 14, and Friday, October 22, from 2-5pm.
The Santa Fe Association of REALTORS® announces the construction of a reading chair for use by adults and children, too. The association partnered with the City of Santa Fe, Boys & Girls Club of Santa Fe/Del Norte, the Historic Guadalupe community, the Community Learning Network, and the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission on this park improvement project. The Santa Fe Arts Commission provided guidance and advisement. Other partners offered volunteer support to complete the project, helped promote the project, and assisted with sprucing up the local park.
Updates, information, and photos of the project will added and available online at http://www.communitylearningnetwork.org/montano-park-project.html
The 7th edition of SeedBroadcast Journal includes a story on Tse Daa K'aan Lifelong Learning Community (TDK).
The article was a included as part of a year-long series of visits and interviews with four regional farmers through the "Seed Climate Change Resilience" initiative made possible in partnership with Native Seeds SEARCH and the Robert Rauschenberg Climate Change Solutions Fund. In May 2016, Chrissie Orr and Jeanette Hart-Mann from SeedBroadcast joined us at TDK during a week of service and learning with students from Fordham University in New York City who volunteered to assist with farmwork at TDK which included interventions implemented in the aftermath of the Gold King mine toxic waste spill last summer such as swale and drip irrigation repair, hand-watering, and natural filtration pond development.
SeedBroadcast is a collaborative project exploring bioregional agri-Culture and seed action through collective inquiries and hands-on creative practices. SeedBroadcast holds the belief that it is a human right to save seeds and share their gifts, to grow food and share its abundance, and to cultivate grassroots wisdom and share its creativity.
SeedBroadcast encourages communities to keep agri-Culture alive and vibrant through working together in creative and inspiring ways. Spending time with people on their farms and in their gardens, at seed exchanges and community gatherings, SeedBroadcast digs deep into the oft-unheard stories of local agri-Culture. Our work includes community-based projects, installations, dialogues, creative actions, and cross-country tours with the Mobile Seed Story Broadcasting Station. Interdisciplinary collaboration is a founding principal of SeedBroadcast activities where cohorts from diverse backgrounds work together as critical partners of inquiry and creative production.
To learn more, read the Seed Broadcast article on TDK below, visit www.seedbroadcast.org, or download a simple booklet on Seed Saving in New Mexico.
Community Learning Network is a grassroots New Mexico-born and locally based 501(c)3 organization dedicated to building stronger communities through real-life learning.