DEMING – It’s donation season and at the forefront of this holiday season is the Luna County Community Health Care Foundation. In fact, the CHCF is in the spirit of giving year round to local charities and nonprofits.
How it started
Founded in 1990 as the Mimbres Memorial Hospital Foundation, CHF Canada split up and became a more civic organization once the hospital became a for-profit primary health care facility.
Supported by local doctors, healthcare workers and first responders, the CHCF has focused on promoting healthcare initiatives for residents of Deming, Columbus, NM and Luna County.
“We are here to help you,” said Edgar Davalos, CHCF representative and municipal judge for the town of Deming. “We want to spread the word and are proud to have supported many organizations and events in Luna County including The Healing House, Hospice, Deming Senior Center, School Nurses, Deming Literacy Program, CHANCES , Cancer Support of Deming and Luna County Inc.. “
The organization was built from a trust fund and continues to financially provide scholarships to nursing students, paramedics, firefighters, diabetes awareness programs, children’s reading programs and the campaign. local Coats for Kids, to name a few. “If it’s about improving healthcare in County Luna, we’re here to help,” Davalos told Headlight.
The scholarship program was born out of the need for more skilled medical professionals in rural New Mexico, such as the Southwest and Luna County.
“We are especially proud to sponsor the Steve Bean Memorial Fellowship which provides scholarships to people entering the emergency medical field,” Davalos said. “Our board of directors is made up of local individuals who have dedicated themselves to promoting healthcare in Luna County and are honored to continue to serve our residents.”
Steve Bean Memorial
Steve Bean was a Deming firefighter / paramedic who helped establish a vital working relationship between the local hospital and the Deming Fire Department which provided ambulance service for all of Luna County.
In the 1990s, Bean also trained firefighters / paramedics in Deming, Luna County and neighboring counties in rescue techniques that are still applied today. Bean’s life was cut short due to illness in 1995 and the CHCF and the Deming Fire Department started a scholarship fund for students interested in careers in medicine and healthcare. .
A golf tournament is held every year in his memory and has become the main fundraising event for the scholarship.
Many current and past firefighters / paramedics have benefited from the scholarship, including Davalos. “Students can take training in nursing, allied health care, or a wider range of medicine, all thanks to the fundraising efforts of the CHCF, DFD and the golf community,” Davalos said. .
During Bean’s lifetime he was successful in merging a working relationship between the DFD and Mimbres Memorial Hospital, which only helped to expand rescue procedures in emergency medical situations.
Bean was the Assistant Medical Investigator, and in November 1991, he was recognized by New Mexico Region II of Emergency Medical Services for his contributions to the promotion and development of the region’s medical system.
Invested in you
Recently, the Community Health Care Foundation donated two checks to two nonprofit organizations in Deming. The CHCF donated $ 5,000 to the Play Sharity Children’s Resource Library and Museum for its ongoing efforts to provide a safe learning environment for children and their families. The CHCF also donated $ 2,500 to the Rotary Club for the Imagination Library, which provides children’s books to students and families in Deming and Luna County.
The Luna County Coats for Kids Foundation also received a check for $ 2,500. The association works with Deming Public Schools to provide students with winter coats when needed. The program annually distributes nearly 500 winter coats each year.
The Cancer Support of Deming and Luna County Inc. has also attracted interest from the CHCF. Cancer Support raises nearly $ 80,000 a year to help cancer patients in Luna County. The COVID-19 organization. The pandemic has severely hampered fundraising efforts for the group and this is where the foundation could provide support.
Deming High School also enjoys the trust of the foundation. Elderly graduates can apply for scholarships awarded annually.
“CHCF is committed to improving the health and well-being of the community of Deming and Luna County,” Davalos told Headlight.
Davalos began serving the town of Deming as a firefighter / paramedic in 1995 and worked his way up the chain of command to the battalion commander and then to the chief, where he served for six years. Davalos retired for two years and returned to the ministry as a battalion commander under Chief Raul Mercado for the past four years.
He was appointed municipal judge last year.
Future of the foundation
Davalos didn’t hesitate when approached to become a liaison between the foundation and the Steve Bean Memorial Golf Tournament. “It was a good fit,” he said. “I would keep the committee updated on the tournament every year and stay up to date with what was happening in our community in terms of how we might help.”
The CHCF continues to expand its funding to local groups in the hope of improving and promoting health care in Luna County.
The pandemic has not slowed down the work of the foundation. “We think it’s important to help in the areas of health,” Davalos said. “Education is important, especially during this pandemic. “
Funding requests can be obtained by searching for a committee member. Applications are completed and submitted to the foundation for approval.
Bill Armendariz can be reached at 575-546-2611 (leave a message) or [email protected]
This article originally appeared on Deming Headlight: Donations all year round: Community Health Care Foundation provides support