2019 Cultivate/Continuity (No Fiscal Sponsor) Grant Application
Before you Begin
General Instruction

Greetings from the McCune Foundation:
This is the grant application to be completed by those who are applying for a CULTIVATE/CONTINUITY grant, but who are not applying under a Fiscal Sponsor. If you are applying under a Fiscal Sponsor, do not use this application. Please return to the McCune website and select the Cultivation and Continuity (Using a Fiscal Sponsor) Online Application Form link.

NOTE: The staff recommends using an updated version of Internet Explorer, Safari or Firefox browsers. Many users have encountered problems with Google Chrome. If your browser is out-of-date, you may encounter problems with applying online. Here is a link that tells you how to update several browsers: https://browser-update.org/update.html.

If you have not already done so, it will be helpful to first collect and prepare the information detailed in the "Worksheet for Cultivation and Continuity Category (No Fiscal Sponsor)" before starting the application. This is available in the APPLY section of the McCune website.

All fields must be completed unless there is an information icon that instructs otherwise. Generally, when a field is not applicable, write "none" or "n/a".

  • Click the information icons that appear throughout the application for field-specific instructions.
  • Limit your use of special formatting. Do not use bullets, in particular, because they will not function correctly.
  • Copy and paste as needed.
  • Log into your account at https://www.GrantRequest.com/SID_301?SA=AM to access saved and submitted requests.
  • Add mail@grantapplication.com to your safe senders list to ensure you receive all system communications.
Once all information is entered:
  • to review, click the 'Review & Submit' button at the bottom of the application page
  • to complete submission, click the 'Submit' button
Once the 'Submit' button is selected, the application can no longer be accessed or altered online.
If you cannot complete the application in one session and want to return to it later, click the 'Save and Finish Later' button at the bottom of the application page.

When you are ready to return to the application, go to the McCune webpage, click on the "APPLY" tab, and then on the link for returning applicants, or you can also use the link provided in the email that you'll receive confirming that your application has been saved, but not submitted.

After the application has been submitted, an email - confirming its submission to the Foundation - will be sent to the email address of the primary contact who submitted the application. If this email is not received, the application has not been successfully submitted. For assistance, please contact Ernesto Torres, Grants Manager, ernesto@nmmccune.org, 505-983-8300.

Thank you!

Organization Information
Organization Information
Organization Name

South Central Regional Transit District
Address: (use mailing address only)

300 West Lohman

Las Cruces

Zip Code:

Organization Website:

Tax Status

Public Entity-Governmental Agency

575 323 1620
Number of Years Organization Has Been in Operation
 Please use numbers only 

Organization's FY 2017 Budget Amount
 Please use numbers only - no special characters 

Organization's FY 2018 Budget Amount
 Please use numbers only - no special characters 

Organization's FY 2019 Budget Amount (projected if not yet available)
 Please use numbers only - no special characters 

Explain significant (+/- 25%) budgetary variance(s), if any, between the Annual Budgets for Fiscal Years 2017-2019.
 50 word limit 

FY2017 was the agency’s first full year budget since beginning operations in 2017. The variation in the current budget FY2019 includes the capital purchase of one small bus. The operating budget has been consistent for each of the three years. Modest service increases were funded via reductions in contract services.

If among the following six categories, a category is not applicable, enter the number “0” for that category.

Number of Board Members

Number of Full-time Paid Staff

Number of Part-time Paid Staff

Number of Full-time Paid Contractors

Number of Part-time Paid Contractors

Number of Volunteers

Organization Mission Statement and Current Major Goals
 100 word limit 

“The mission of the South Central Regional Transit District (SCRTD) is to strengthen communities, facilitate economic and educational activities, and promote health and safety through safe and efficient regional transportation services.”
Powers of the District:
Enter into contracts and agreements affecting the District.
Pass a resolution requiring any of its Member governments to hold a referendum on a gross receipts tax, in increments as small as 0.0625%, with the total not to exceed 0.5%.
Pledge all or a portion of the revenues to the payment of bonds of the District
Provide transit services for its Members

The current major funders for the organization.
 Please list all current major funders.
75 word limit

Membership fees: 50 cents per resident. Membership fees: $113,000.
Annual Funding from Doña Ana County for transit service within the county: $350,000
Federal funding from 5311: Operating funds $419,085.90; Capital Funds: $71,000

Did the organization receive McCune Foundation funding in any of the following years? Check the boxes that apply.

2016 McCune Grant

2017 McCune Grant

2018 McCune Grant

The organization’s detailed funding history with the McCune Foundation.
 Please list the year and award amount for each grant received.
75 word limit

SCRTD has not received any funding from the Mc Cune Foundation.
Explain significant changes, if any, the organization has experienced in the past year.
 Because the application already includes fields for explaining significant changes regarding budget and leadership/staff, please only address significant changes affecting other areas (for example, mission, goals, core programs/services/activities, core communities served/engaged).
100 word limit

By the end of 2017, the District had completed nearly all of the goals in the 2015 Five Year Service and Financial Plan. The plan was updated as of 4/25/2018. SCRTD has improved efficiency by consolidating contract services personnel and transitioning them to the District. The savings of over $60,000 has been transferred to operations, adding a bus operator and improving service by adding transit trips. Ridership is up 60 percent in the past year due in part to these savings and transfer of resources.
Please discuss the organization’s leadership structure/staff. Identify the key individuals who carry out the organization’s work, including name, title and role/area of responsibility, as well as whether they are paid full-time or part-time staff or contractor, or volunteer.
 150 word limit 

David Armijo, Executive Director. Responsible for all aspects of the organization. FT
Velma Navarrete, Finance Manager. Handles all financial matters. FT
Leticia Lopez, Transit Supervisor. Oversees drivers, schedules, etc. Handles any disruption in service. FT
Merlinda Barela, Dispatcher. Does daily oversight of the running of the system. FT.
Bus drivers. All FT
Sharon Thomas and Greg White, volunteers. Meet regularly with the director to discuss and carry out various projects, work on grants, develop outreach and education efforts, connect with local organizations, etc. PT

Has there been a change in the organization’s leadership/staff in the past year? If yes, please explain.
 50 word limit 

Yes, added a financial manager to replace a contract with a fiscal agent.
What are the core communities served/engaged by the organization and how does the organization’s leadership/staff reflect these communities?
 100 word limit 

In 2012, the Empowerment Congress (a coalition of rural residents in Doña Ana County) held meetings in communities in Doña Ana County. Residents chose public transportation as their highest priority. Working with SCRTD, members conducted their own survey, practiced presentation skills, met with county commissioners, and presented at county commission meetings. The SCRTD currently serves communities in the southern part of Doña Ana County plus Alamogordo in Otero County. The Executive Director is originally from this region and has family here. All of the other employees are from the area currently being served and have deep connections with their communities.
Contact Information
Head of Organization

First Name

Last Name


Executive Director

Office Phone

575 949 3229881


Mailing Address

300 West Lohman
Las Cruces, NM 88005

Additional Contact for this Request
If the 'Head of Organization' is the Contact, check the 'Same Contact as Above" box. If it is important to communicate with someone in addition to the 'Head of Organization,' complete this section (do not check the box ).
Same Contact as Above


First Name

Last Name


Public Outreach

Office Phone

575 644 2517


Mailing Address

985 Mormon Drive
Las Cruces, NM 88011

Board President/Chair

Board President/Chair First Name

Board President/Chair Last Name

 President or Chair 


Request Information
Request Information
Request Amount:
 The Request Amount Range for the Cultivate/Continuity Grant Category is $10,000 - $25,000.
Please use numbers ONLY.

How would you leverage the Request Amount, that is, how would you use the funding requested to help raise additional resources? At this time, what level of certainty do you have with regard to securing these additional resources (for example, what is already confirmed or what is in the process of being identified)?
 150 word limit 

SCRTD would develop a Transit Promotoras team. Face-to-face communication is highly valued in this region and many organizations have promotoras who are local residents trained to develop and administer programs in their communities—medical services, literacy outreach, local gardens and food programs, English courses, etc.
There has not been any transit available in our rural communities for many years and people do not know how to read schedules and are not accustomed to riding buses. We do outreach activities at local fiestas, community centers, schools, churches, etc., but the one-to-one approach will offer better communication avenues. We would connect with existing promotoras who provide services to people who are likely to benefit from public transportation and train and pay them to add transit support to their home visits. If the pilot program is successful, we will use it to garner funding for a bigger program. Several funders have shown interest.


Total Revenue For each of the following five categories, using whole numbers only, enter the applicable percentage of the total revenue. The sum of all of the categories must equal 100%. If among the categories, a category is not applicable, enter the number “0” for that category.

% of Total Revenue - Earned Income

% of Total Revenue - Foundation

% of Total Revenue - Government

% of Total Revenue - Individual Contributions

% of Total Revenue - Other

Tell us about the organization’s efforts to sustain and/or grow resources beyond the McCune Foundation funding timeframe (generally, late February 2019 – late February 2020).
 100 word limit 

The SCRTD will expand service to the northern part of Doña Ana County as well as to Otero and Sierra counties, bringing in more membership funds. The SCRTD currently receives federal funding for rural transit, but plans to achieve Designated Recipient status (for funding for urban transit) from the Federal Transit Administration in order to provide circulator service in Anthony and Sunland Park. Additional membership funds can be used for promotoras in the new service areas. Some of the urban funding can go toward the Promotora programs in the two cities in the district that do not have circulator service.
Request Description
Request Title [Optional]:
You may leave this blank or include a brief statement (enclosed in parentheses) that describes the focus of the General Operating Support, using the following format: General Operating Support (…)
 Note: General Operating Support is funding that enables an organization to carry out its mission and goals. Following are some examples of what it can be used to underwrite: administrative infrastructure, strategic plan implementation, building or strengthening organizational capacity, maintaining core programs and essential staff.
15 word limit

General Operating Support (Transit Promotoras Project)

Socially transformative work is not a solo endeavor. Your responses to Questions 1a, 1b and 1c will help us understand how the organization’s work fits within the broader field it is working to transform.

1a) Describe the organization’s vision for its work, explaining the “big picture” and timeline that frame this vision. Tell us what the organization’s role is within this framework. What are the organization’s core strategies for making the biggest difference within the broader field?
 200 word limit 

Under state legislation, any two or more entities may form a regional transit district to provide public transportation in areas where public transportation services do not exist and to coordinate that service with existing services in the region. There are four transit districts in New Mexico. The SCRTD was formed in 2006 to provide public transportation services in areas within its boundaries (Doña Ana, Sierra, and Otero counties). The SCRTD introduced a series of starter routes in 2014 that enabled the SCRTD to “test the waters” for interest and to determine stop locations. Full time service began with the hiring of an executive director in 2016. SCRTD has service south from Las Cruces to the communities between Las Cruces and Anthony, NM. From Anthony, service continues to Sunland Park to connect to El Paso at the Sun Metro westside station. Service also continues from Anthony to the east to Chaparral, NM, and to the Sun Metro northern station. The SCRTD works with local communities, organizations, employers, workforce development programs, local governments, public schools, community college campuses, New Mexico State University, special needs programs, etc. in order to provide public transportation services to rural communities. Timeline is continuous.
1b) With regard to the upcoming year, what will be implemented? How will this support the organization’s long-term goals - beyond the McCune Foundation funding timeframe (generally, late February 2019 – late February 2020).
 100 word limit 

A successful pilot Transit Promotoras program will include hiring and training of local community members to be Transit Promotoras. Several promotora groups already exist and, in some cases, SCRTD will provide training on using transit so that these promortoras can offer their clients, who are often without adequate transportation, the opportunity to use transit. The Transit Promotora Program will allow the SCRTD to continue its work “to strengthen communities, facilitate economic and educational activities, and promote health and safety through safe and efficient regional transportation services.” A successful pilot program will enable SCRTD to secure future funding for the program.
1c) How will you identify and engage peers and allies that share the organization’s vision?
 100 word limit 

The SCRTD continues to work with the Empowerment Congress and with Community Action Agency, Ngage, the local Workforce Connection, a new Workforce Talent Collaborative, and a variety of programs that take residents to STEM classes, job training, early college high school, etc.
We attend community meetings, are helping to develop a new approach to workforce training, do orientation meetings at the community college campuses, help Workforce Connection find people for their programs, work with local employers, participate in local and regional planning efforts, and are in close contact with our state legislators, who have provided funding to purchase buses, etc.


The McCune Foundation’s core values support deep engagement with diverse New Mexico communities, both as recipients of services and as collaborators whose voices inform the kinds of services received and how these are provided, including the design, development and implementation of programs and approaches. Your responses to Questions 2a and 2b will help us understand how the organization’s work engages with communities served.

2a) Specify the communities that the organization serves and engages. How will the organization’s work benefit them directly?
 100 word limit 

Currently, SCRTD serves the communities located between Las Cruces and El Paso. People use the transit service to further their education, to get to medical services, to get to groceries with fresh food, to access medical procedures (kidney dialysis), to get prescriptions, etc. Poverty levels are high (Sunland Park 47.2%; Anthony 40.2%; Chaparral 39.8%; Vado 38.2%; Doña Ana 39.8%; Hatch 36.1%) and many families do not own a reliable vehicle. Rural living often requires more than one vehicle. Using transit instead of another vehicle can save as much as $9,000/year thus leaving more funds for housing and other critical needs.
2b) How are these communities engaged in determining the needs that are the focus of the organization’s work? How are they involved in shaping policies and strategies, and evaluating programs, services and benefits? How does the organization respond to and cultivate leadership within these communities?
 100 word limit 

The Empowerment Congress chose public transportation as its first priority, interviewed residents, helped plan routes and stops, and lobbied the county commission for funding. When the buses arrived, they held welcoming parties. The SCRTD participates in all kinds of community events. The SCRTD, along with RoadRUNNER Transit in Las Cruces, just received funding ($100,000 from NM Department of Transportation--NMDOT) to do a Short Term (5 to 10 years) plan. The planning will include numerous public participation meetings. The Empowerment Congress, Community Action Agency, and Ngage (all with extensive community networks) have offered to advertise and host these meetings.

The McCune Foundation values innovation and risk-taking that develop and support new approaches to the challenges faced by New Mexico communities. Your responses to Questions 3a and 3b will provide your organization’s perspective on innovation, risk-taking and challenges.

3a) How does the organization’s work uniquely challenge conventional approaches and create significant, long-term systemic impact?
 150 word limit 

The SCRTD is working with a number of other organizations and programs to develop a “transit culture.” We know that earlier generations in this area did use transit, but it was often a “wave down the bus” system. That approach is no longer possible, so we need to teach people how to use a modern transit system. Access to education, jobs, training, medical care, etc. through transit can be life changing, but just setting up the bus system is not enough. Connectivity to other systems and regions and teaching people how to use the transit are also important. Finally, bringing together the educational institutions, the employers, the workforce programs, the health providers, promotora groups, local food programs, youth outreach, etc., to develop an inclusive, regional approach will enable us to create a “transit culture.”
3b) What is innovative about the organization and its work? What aspects could serve as a model that is replicable and/or scalable?
 100 word limit 

The promotora approach. While our rural communities are fairly isolated and suffer from a lack of connectivity, the existing promotora networks throughout the region offer a unique communication system. Because promotoras often work with the home-bound, those needing medical services, isolated young mothers, elderly people who cannot drive, they can reach those who need new transportation options. They have already established a bond with their clients and they are uniquely situated to teach people how to use transit. Adding transit support to local promotora training is a new approach to encouraging and assisting people to make use of transit opportunities.
Geographical Area Served
 The county or counties that are being served. If serving all New Mexico counties, scroll to the bottom of the list and select "Statewide." 

Dona Ana County

Given the “big picture” that frames the organization’s work and the organization’s role within a broader field/ecosystem, what ideas/actions will be implemented to serve your long-term goals during the McCune Foundation funding timeframe (generally, late February 2019 – late February 2020)? How will successes, failures and lessons learned be tracked and documented?
 100 word limit 

We will hire and train local transit promotoras in order to implement and serve our long term goals.
We will track how many residents the promotoras reach and how often they interact with their clients.
We will track the number of people who try the transit system.
We will also conduct a survey of promotoras and their clients to determine why clients did or did not attempt to use transit.
We will use this information as part of the public participation efforts that will inform the Short Term Plan (5 to 10 years) that SCRTD is developing.

Briefly explain how the organization evaluates its work for effectiveness. Include information about the roles and involvement of, for example, board, staff, consultants, volunteers, communities engaged/served, and peer organizations with which your organization works.
 100 word limit 

NMDOT evaluation: SCRTD has received high marks and clean financial audits from NMDOT. SCRTD is approaching 700,000 miles with only one accident. By 2018, SCRTD had achieved most of the 2015 Five Year Plan’s Goals and Objectives; the plan has been refined and updated. Board members are reviewed annually. Now that staff includes more than the executive director and bus drivers, staff performance goals are being developed. Empowerment Congress now has funding and is starting community meetings again. Ngage work on passenger rail exceeded expectations with over 1000 responses to the survey and over 50 people at both public meetings.
Foundation Priorities
Foundation Priorities (9) with the Leverage Points for each Priority

With which Foundation Priority does the organization's work most closely align? Within this Priority, what leverage points significantly apply to the work of the organization?

Following is the link - for copying and then pasting into your web browser - to the Priorities Framework document that explains the Foundation's Priorities as well as the leverage points for each priority: http://nmmccune.org/media/files/Finailized%20Frameworks%20FINAL-5.pdf (this document can also be downloaded from the "Apply" page of the McCune web site, www.nmmccune.org).

From the following menu, first select the one Foundation Priority with which the organization’s work most closely aligns. Next, within that one Priority, select any of the leverage points significantly applicable to the work of the organization.
 For example, if you check the box for "Building Links Between Arts & Community Engagement," you would then check any of the significantly relevant boxes: "Building Links... / Community Engagement," "Building Links... / Collaboration & Partnership," and so on. 

Influencing Urban... / Injecting Community Voices into Urban Development (Influencing Urban Planning & Built Environments)
Influencing Urban... / Driving Resource Efficiency in Built Environments (Influencing Urban Planning & Built Environments)
Influencing Urban... / Innovative Strategies for Affordable Housing (Influencing Urban Planning & Built Environments)

Are there other Foundation Priorities that the organization’s work also aligns with? Explain the alignment(s).
 100 word limit 

Economic Development & Family Asset Building
Access to transit means saving as much as $9,000 per year in cost for a second vehicle.
Education Transformation & Early Childhood Development
The SCRTD will partner with the Children’s Reading Foundation and their promotoras who work with young parents to read and engage in literacy activities with their children.
Leveraging Opportunities In Health Care
The SCRTD routes stop at all of the La Clinica de Familia (LCDF) facilities. SCRTD works LCDF with staff and promotoras to learn how to use the buses so that they can help their patients who need transportation.