Elev8 New Mexico

Elev8 New Mexico After School Programs

Elev8 New Mexico is being implemented in five diverse middle schools statewide—in urban, rural, and tribal communities. Elev8 New Mexico is a program of Youth Development, Inc. (YDI), a statewide endowment-building and grant-making organization that serves and invests in New Mexico’s communities and people. 

Elev8 New Mexico thrives on the diversity of its local populations, offering programs and services that support each unique school community. In Gadsden, on the US-Mexico border, there are integrated supports for a largely agricultural, immigrant community; at Laguna Pueblo, there is culturally relevant programming for an American Indian student population; and in three schools in Albuquerque, Elev8 is structured to meet the needs of a very diverse community that includes over 40 American Indian tribes, a large population of Mexican immigrants, Latino, Anglo, Asian, African and African American youth.

Middle grade students in Elev8 New Mexico schools face major challenges that are reflective of much of the state. Lack of health insurance, high dropout rates, issues related to poverty, high levels of unemployment, and access challenges in rural areas. With the participation of a broad array of organizations, elected officials, students, families and schools, Elev8 New Mexico is integrating extended day learning programs, healthcare, family supports and community engagement so students succeed in school and in life.

Watch a video about Elev8 New Mexico here.

Elev8 New Mexico programs offer:

  • Comprehensive school-based health services, including primary, preventive, dental, behavioral health and family planning.
  • Arts and culture after-school programs.
  • Academic enrichment and homework help after school.
  • Family eligibility screening and enrollment for governmental social services through Single Stop and other programs.
  • Mentoring programs for youth through Big Brothers Big Sisters and other organizations.
  • Parental engagement, involving home visits, parent newspapers, and parent participation in after-school programs.
  • 4H programs.
  • Native American leadership programs.
  • Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP), a college preparation program for students.
  • Athletic activities.
  • MESA Math, Engineering and Science after-school program.
  • Financial literacy training for parents, focusing on investing, budgeting, and managing credit—as well as on accessing economic relief benefits like Earned Income Tax Credits or food stamps when families are eligible.
  • Community organizing around hunger awareness.
  • Employment and workforce readiness.
  • Apprenticeship programs for middle grade students.
  • Youth Councils and organizing for policy change.


Click here to learn more about Elev8 New Mexico


An Elev8 New Mexico Success Story


This past holiday season, Elev8 New Mexico provided a much needed and timely support for families through its financial literacy program.

Gadsden Middle School is located in Anthony, NM, in the southern part of the state, bordering Texas. The community hosts a number of new immigrant families, many with limited English language skills and employment opportunities. Gadsden parents look forward to the holiday season, though it can also be a time of added stress, especially in the current economic climate.

With this in mind, the Elev8 Gadsden team took a hands-on approach to working with parents in "Stretching Your Dollar" classes. In these sessions, they learned about budgeting techniques, common pitfalls associated with credit card use and other important money-saving tools.

Participants were then given the opportunity to apply what they learned when the group took a field trip to a local grocery store with a budget of $100.00. In preparing for the field trip, parents reviewed store flyers to find the best buys and arrived at the store with a grocery list and calculator in hand. Their goal was to stretch their dollars to the max while staying within their budgets.

The class and the field trip were a big success. Not only did parents gain valuable, real-world skills in money management, but by offering the $100.00 grocery incentive as part of the class, Elev8 was able to respond to a concrete need, which helped foster good relationships between the school and the participating parents. By providing a supportive environment, Elev8 hopes to encourage deeper parent involvement in the school community.

More Elev8 Success Stories

Making the school a place that helps parents— with their income, employment and other needs— can improve the alienation many parents in poor communities feel toward schools in general.
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