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The mission of the Colonias Development Council is to improve the quality of life through the promotion, development and preservation of decent and affordable housing in colonia communities in southern New Mexico while creating the space for social, economic, and environmental justice initiatives.
The CDC was created in the late 1980’s by the Catholic Diocese of Las Cruces to address immigration and farmworker issues. The Farmworker Organizing Project was a direct result of the aftermath of the sweeping immigration reform under the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986. This led to work in colonias, as that is where farmworkers tended to live. CDC emerged to provide advocacy, community organizing, and capacity support for colonia residents in southern New Mexico. Colonias are unincorporated settlements along the U.S.-Mexican border that lack basic infrastructure, such as potable water, adequate housing, central wastewater systems, and/or paved roads.
Today, the CDC has expanded its reach by creating programs that impact thousands of low-income families throughout Doña Ana County and adjacent counties.
Our Current Programs:
Throughout its 27-year trajectory, the CDC has continued to develop programs that address the needs of rural, colonia residents to improve the quality of life through leadership development, advocacy, creating opportunities for civic engagement, trainings, and direct services. We have created three specific programs that address the needs of colonia communities. These are: Integrated Services for Immigrant Families (ISIF), Early Childhood Education through the Chaparral Family Development Center, and the Promotoras de Apoyo Familiar (PAF).