CONNECT, a network of social and community services for community members funded by the City of Santa Fe and Santa Fe County, has won the 2022 National Association of Counties (NACo) Achievement Award in Human Services.
CONNECT leverages a network of navigators – community health workers, volunteers, or social workers – in local organizations to link people to services and resources in the community. The CONNECT network uses an “any door” philosophy, which allows CONNECT to screen individuals at any organization they contact for assistance with rent or mortgage, critical home repairs, shelter, food, transportation needs, childcare and more, as well connecting them to longer-term programs and resources to meet their life goals. Both the City and County fund agencies within CONNECT to provide navigation services to individuals seeking resources. CONNECT now has over 200 navigators from 60 programs and has linked 6,361 individuals to resources since April 2019.
“We can all take pride in the CONNECT program’s recognition as an outstanding program that serves the needs of City and County residents. By providing skilled navigators who can help folks get the help they need, CONNECT puts people at the center of the service network," said Mayor Alan Webber. "To the staff of the City and County, to the many navigators, and to the service providers, many thanks and congratulations! This recognition is well-deserved.”
“New Mexicans have always known how to take care of each other, especially in difficult times. CONNECT is a way for the City and County to support the agencies doing such good work in our communities and to respect and champion the expertise of those people who help the people,” says Kyra Ochoa, Director of the City of Santa Fe Community Health and Safety Department. “We’re grateful for the recognition and for the ongoing partnership between the City and the County.”
CONNECT is overseen by Christa Hernandez, Youth and Family Services Program Manager for the City of Santa Fe and Jennifer Romero, Health Care Assistance Administrative Program Manager for Santa Fe County. Click here to download the CONNECT 2022 Resource Directory. Individuals in need of support can also apply online here: www.santafenm.gov/connect.