Our Story In Archuleta County, 8.2% of families and 11.6% of residents fell below the poverty line in 2017. The Coalition was established to understand the food system with the aim of advancing food equity in our community. Initially, it served in a network building capacity, examining food issues of interest to Coalition members.Through its continued work with the community, the Coalition identified a number of barriers to accessing affordable, nutritious food in Archuleta County, which it continues to address. The Coalition uses a participatory approach to its work. This means that the community members, participants, working groups, and partner agencies are actively engaged in identifying and reviewing strategies that drive the direction of activities. These strategies and activities are based on issues that have emerged from the community food assessment and cycles of learning.
Our Values & Approach
Healthy Archuleta is a grassroots community group that is using a participatory and action-driven approach that is process oriented, strategic, and systematic.
Our goal is to maintain a posture of learning in understanding our food system in our communityfrom our community members.
Our approach is informed by our values of equity, service, and humility.
We strive to work “with” as many members of our community as possible -- learning about the food and health care access and utilization in our community in pursuit of systemic change (issues and opportunities) toward a more EQUITABLE food system, nutrition security, and health equity.
Healthy Archuleta is committed to justice for those who have historically been under-resourced and under-represented. We believe equity—especially health equity—requires the engagement and substantive participation of everyone in our community. We have and continue to deliberately engage the Spanish-Language Hispanic and Indigenous populations of our community in all our work.
Our Team Everyone who we work with is part of our team.We seek to be participatory and collaborative. Our team is made up of community members, youth, families, growers, producers, processors, food organizations, health care professionals, educators, and many others. In an effort to be systematic and understand issues and opportunities better, we initially identified three priority areas and formed groups that can work on them. The following are the groups and their mission:
Growers/Producers Group - Advance food production to increase access to fresh foods.
Community Food Organizations/Food Pantries - Listen to beneficiaries to increase access to nutritious foods and remove barriers to service.
Neighborhoods and Families - Engage neighborhoods and families to remove barriers to accessing nutritious foods, and work with school communities to advocate for connecting food insecurity to health outcomes and increasing access to nutritious foods.
Youth - Empower youth to identify issues and opportunities and to support them in ways that they want to contribute to advancing nutrition security and health equity. YOUTH have been vital to the work of the Coalition and played an important part since the Community Food Assessment in 2019. Read more about it...
Today, our team has expanded to include partners and community members from diverse backgrounds and experiences. We invite others to join our work. We want to make room at the table for multiple perspectives and lived experiences.
Our Efforts Our efforts are focused on ten areas. These include 1) Nutrition Security|Health Equity Assessment, 2) Increasing Access & Utilization of Primary & Preventive Health Care, 3) Increasing Local Food Production/Supply, 4) Increasing Food Access & Security, 5) Advancing learning about the Food System & Health Promotion/Wellness, 6) Language Equity, 7) Volunteer Engagement, 8) Youth Engagement, 9) Community Building, and 10) Supporting and Strengthening HAs Operation.
Our Structure On September 10, 2021 Healthy Archuleta, Inc.was established as a non-profit corporation in the State of Colorado. Healthy Archuleta is dedicated to advancing food production, health and community wellness through food/nutrition resource assistance, educational programs, advocacy, systems work, and promoting community-driven solutions that lead to a healthier Archuleta.