Part Three: A Victory Brought By Unity
“ Where there is unity there is always victory” -Publilius Syrus
As we near the end of this community’s story, we take a step back and reflect on the unity that was a driving force in this journey. The Empowerment Congress team and the Anapra community unified their voices to amplify their cause. Empowerment Congress stood by Anapras’ side and ensured that their right to use their voices was preserved. With that kind of support, it was easy for community leaders and members to speak up at meetings and demand their neighborhood remain a place they can call home.
In the last post, we left Anapra with the small victory of having been given a presentation by Sunland Park about the stormwater pump project. In September 2018, the city of Sunland Park voted to approve the Vision 2040 plan. The funding for the stormwater pump is also approved. Sunland Park is now ready to send out the bids for construction. The stormwater pump project is awarded to construction company Smith & Co. This is the kind of progress the Anapra community and the Empowerment Congress team have been striving for; it seemed the moment was finally here.
In November 2018, the construction company finally started taking steps to construct the stormwater pump in Anapra. The whole team could finally take some time to take a breath. The Empowerment Congress team and Anapra leaders had been tireless working for eight months. For eight months, this team had been going to countless meetings, having discussions with anyone who would listen, and spreading awareness about the issue at hand. Later in the following year, on February 28, 2019, The city of Sunland Park hosted a meeting with the community. The leaders of Anapra requested the meeting so that city officials could answer some last-minute questions about the flooding issues and building codes. The city provided written answers for community leaders to review.
After the dust had settled, the Anapra community and Empowerment Congress team could see what was ahead on the horizon. In April of 2019, the construction of the stormwater pump phase one was complete. Everyone was ecstatic about the progress that had been made. The Empowerment Congress team, Anapra community members, and city officials celebrated May’s milestone with a ribbon-cutting ceremony to welcome the new stormwater pump’s arrival.
The Empowerment Congress team celebrated the victory by making a short documentary about the journey Anapra took in fighting to keep their community. The short documentary is titled Somos Anapra and was screened for the community in October. Also happening in October was a vote to approve the funding for phase two of the stormwater pump. That funding was approved in October.
Anapra leaders will continue to do their part and keep Sunland Park officials accountable in making sure the project is finished till the end. The team at Empowerment Congress will also continue to stay in touch with leaders and keep officials accountable. We at Empowerment Congress wanted to share this story because it is a story of success. It is proof that small communities do have the power to bring change. The story shows how unity can be a driving force to victory. An organization with resources and a community with a problem came together and created a positive change. To all the small communities that feel forgotten, know that the right team will stop and listen to you and will support you in battles that might seem like giant Goliath’s. With unity, there is nothing that can’t be accomplished.
This is the end of our Anapra series. Thank you for taking the time to read!