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One Albuquerque: Kids' Cabinet

The City of Albuquerque and partners support our community's children with the One Albuquerque: Kids' Cabinet.


For more information about the Kids' Cabinet please email Justine Freeman.

We have a pivotal role in serving youth in Albuquerque. Expanding access to effective youth programs to keep our next generation engaged, learning, and out of harm’s way is a top priority.
—Mayor Tim Keller

Who We Are

The Kids' Cabinet, created in 2018 by Mayor Keller, is an appointed body composed of content experts, community partners, and agencies who work with City leadership to improve access and increase youth opportunities and outcomes across Albuquerque. Membership includes representatives from the public and private sector as well as the City of Albuquerque Police Department; Albuquerque Community Safety; Equity and Inclusion; Family and Community Services; Cultural Services; Parks and Recreation; Senior Affairs; and Transit.

Kids' Cabinet Work Groups

The Kids' Cabinet established the following work groups, each led by both a community member and a City staff member:

  • Public Safety
  • Early Learning
  • Out-of-School Time

Strategic Priorities & Projects

The One Albuquerque Kids' Cabinet is charged with:

  • Identifying service gaps and potential assets
  • Conducting gap analyses
  • Cultivating youth voice
  • Selecting and implementing strategies and leveraging resources
  • Developing Policy

Recent Kids’ Cabinet Projects Include

  • SPIRIT program at Washington Middle School to prevent violence and implement restorative justice practices, in collaboration with the Department of Justice and other partners.
  • Success Planning at Highlands High School to connect students with one-on-one mentoring, in collaboration with Harvard Ed Redesign Lab, the Boys & Girls Club of NM and other partners.
  • Ongoing partnership with ABC Community Schools to connect struggling students and families with the resources they need.

Past Projects:


The Mapping the Gap: Out-of-School Time Programming in the City of Albuquerque report identifies where Out-of-School-Time programming is offered across the City of Albuquerque, and it uses a demographic analysis to identify the areas where these programs may be needed most. Understanding these patterns, both where programming is offered and where it is needed most, can help the City and its partner organizations build or expand existing programs.

Out-of-School Time programs can play a fundamental role in youth development. Whether it is a cooking class, soccer practice, or after-school tutoring, these activities allow youth to have high-quality interactions with their peers and adults, which can help the development of self-management strategies. Academic oriented programs can also support positive academic outcomes. However, research suggests that low-income families and families of color often struggle to engage in OST programming due to the cost of these programs or other logistical barriers, like programs being too far away or rigid work schedules that prevent parents from taking their children to these programs. Because of this, it is critical for the City of Albuquerque to understand who is not currently being served and where strategic partnerships may be in order to fill the gap.


View Report as a PDF file.

A PNG of the cover of the kids cabinet mapping the gap report.

Identifying service gaps is a key priority of the Kids' Cabinet. As a first step, the City has completed an inventory that includes all opportunities for children and families (1) administered by City departments (2) through City contracts with community organizations and (3) at City facilities. The next step is to capture additional opportunities for children and families.

Community organizations are encouraged to submit an opportunity at our Children and Youth Programs and Services Inventory.




View as a PDF file.

A jpeg of City of Albuquerque Youth Program Sites

Youth Connect State of the Summer Reports

We believe in the limitless potential of our youth and their families. Youth Connect signifies more than just programs; it represents our unwavering  commitment to forging a brighter future for everyone.

Our experiences are meticulously crafted to empower, inspire, and enrich the lives of young individuals. Whether it’s through youth employment and educational opportunities, exciting summer adventures, or active community involvement, we
are resolute in our mission to offer a diverse range of programming that fosters personal growth, learning, and pure enjoyment.

In the promise of Albuquerque, we see a home that appreciates diversity, creativity, and resilience. Through Youth Connect, we are nurturing the talents,
dreams, and aspirations of our youth because we genuinely recognize that their success is the cornerstone to fulfilling our city’s promise–to be the best place for families.

View the complete 2023 State of the Summer Report.

Seven kids standing in a circle looking down toward the camera.

Each year when summer comes, we know our students are ready for summer fun, and we all look forward to a little more quality time with family. But we also knowthat this out-of-school time can be a challenge for working families. As parents,we want to make sure our kids stay safe and engaged in our community which is why my  administration has placed such a focus on the City’s summer youth programming–a range of opportunities to provide safe, fun, and enriching programs>that families across our city can utilize. In the summer of 2022, the Departments of Arts and Culture, Parks and Recreation, Senior Affairs, and the Family and Community Services continued their work together under our Youth Connect initiative, building public safety by expanding our efforts to create positive and inclusive spaces for Albuquerque’s youth to share interests and develop friendships.

View the complete 2022 State of the Summer Report.

A woman in a uniform polo holds a scarlet macaw in front of 5 sitting children.

With COVID-19 vaccination rates on the rise in 2021 our teams stepped up to offer virtual and smaller scale in-person programs throughout the pandemic shut downs of last year—a needed lifeline for local families, especially our essential workers who did not have the luxury to stay at home. Seeing how critical these initiatives were to keeping our community moving, we increased funding for youth programs from $2.3 million to nearly $3 million.

As our community worked hard to lower COVID-19 cases, parents began returning to work and we began preparing to welcome back more summer youth program  participants. Staff from Arts and Culture, Parks and Recreation, Senior Affairs, and the Family and Community Services Departments came together to ramp back up and determine what safety protocols were needed to continue keeping our youth healthy. Because of their hard work, we were able to provide programming for 227,190 children this summer—up from around 60,000 last summer.

View the complete 2021 State of the Summer Report.

A group of adults observing children playing on the splash pad at Civic Plaza with City Hall in the background.

In cities across America and across New Mexico, the pandemic led to decisions to cancel summer programs entirely and to freeze hiring for thousands of young people who depend on these programs for summer jobs. In our city, we saw a chance to step up for local families, especially our essential workers who have not had the luxury of being able to stay at home while they work. We knew affordable, accessible child development programs were even more critical in this year than ever before.

For summer 2020, we made a commitment to offer full-day youth programs for kindergarten through eighth grades at 22 community centers across Albuquerque. We brought together staff from Cultural Services, Parks and Recreation, Senior Affairs, and the Family and Community Services Departments, coordinated by our Youth Connect initiative, to offer dozens of programs adapted to include COVID-safe practices.

View the complete 2020 State of the Summer Report.

A JPG of the cover of the State of the Summer report for 2020.

The 2019 State of the Summer report provides an overview of results and future trends of City of Albuquerque youth programs and events and shows substantial growth and expansion since the Mayor’s first State of the Summer Report released in 2018.

“We set high goals and got to work providing more and better opportunities for our youth,” Mayor Tim Keller said. “The results are paying off—now, and for the future of our City—as our next generations are learning new skills and staying involved.”

View the complete 2019 State of the Summer Report.

A JPG of 2019 Sate of the Summer Report.

The first State of the Summer Report provides an overview of results and future trends of youth programs provided by the City of Albuquerque. During Mayor Keller’s first summer in office, City departments (Family and Community Services, Parks and Recreation, Cultural Services, Senior Affairs, and Transit) partnered to expand and create new opportunities for youth and families. Among some of the most dramatic results: enrollment increased at community centers by 31% and swim lessons by 17%; more than 27,000 youth registered to participate in one of the 119 programs offered by the City; and more than 1,000 youth were employed during the summer months, including many first-time employees.

View the complete 2018 State of the Summer Report.

A jpeg of Youth Connect State of the Summer 2018