ASU Community Partnerships assists with fundraising efforts

(07-25-2012)

Families affected by the lay-offs include Lucas, Lucia and Odelia.

Adams State University Community Partnerships worked with several organizations on a grassroots effort to raise funds to benefit the families of workers laid off from the Rakhra Mushroom Farm. The institutions, including Alamosa County Chamber of Commerce, San Luis Valley Development Resources Group, Sacred Heart Church, ASU Community Partnerships and Alamosa County Economic Development Corporation, used an international fundraising website Indiegogo.

These organizations worked with community members, including Guatemalan families, to tell the story of how they came to the San Luis Valley. Danny Ledonne, ASU videographer instructor, compiled, filmed and edited the stories with the help of the group. Many Guatemalan families came to the valley during the 80s to flee from the Guatemalan Civil War.

The web based fundraising campaign brought in over two thousand dollars and was transferred to La Puente, who established a program to assist mushroom farm workers who were laid-off, with rent, utilities and food until they can find other income. The group's initial goals were to obtain an employee stake in the company. As of today, Rakhra is still under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The organizations that came together for this project are committed to preserving jobs and supporting value added agriculture producers in the San Luis Valley. La Puente continues to accept donations to assist prior mushroom farm workers during this challenging time.