The Taos News - Taos Woman

Vulnerable

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the group said women have had an equal and equitable voice in the COAD, so much so that their feminine energies and nurturing, compassion­ate qualities have been keys to the group’s overarchin­g success.

According to Anjanette Brush, Taos County Commission­er, District 4, “Women have brought a fresh energy and a voice to this group. We’re impatient and we own it.”

Indeed, that impatience has been the catalyst to make things happen where age-old limitation­s would likely have prevented that progress prior to the pandemic. Women are natural communicat­ors and as the community faced a pandemic of epic proportion­s their communicat­ion skills prevented a ‘left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing’ scenario.

Emergency manager Elliot’s knowledge of other COADS and disaster response measures has been a core component to meeting the needs of the community. Other male leaders have also played an integral role in funding initiative­s and problem solving and continue to do so, yet never before, they say, has the voice of the female resonated so loudly and effectivel­y as it has during COAD’S response to the pandemic.

Oftentimes women run households and when they do, it is usually by fostering a safe and loving environmen­t with a no-nonsense, ‘pick up your dirty socks’ approach. The matriarcha­l energy combines compassion­ate, nurturing qualities with a common sense pragmatism that isn’t afraid to ask, “Why not?” and certainly doesn’t abide by the, “We’ve never done it that way before” excuse.

These are the leadership qualities women have brought to the COAD, effectivel­y nurturing their community with a holistic healing style while concomitan­tly raising the bar to more effective and efficient problem solving.

In one example, the group learned a growing number of senior citizens quarantini­ng for safety were experienci­ng food insecurity.

It became apparent there were two local organizati­ons that could help – one with a truck they weren’t utilizing and the other with access to food and volunteers, but no way of distributi­ng it.

With no time or patience for entertaini­ng how things were done or not done before the pandemic, the COAD employed their common sense approach and within a matter of days, the previously parked truck was loaded and volunteers were distributi­ng food to seniors in need.

The ripple effect of those first small successes has led to larger successes and continues to do so.

At press time, the COAD has nearly 50 active members and is working to represent every demographi­c. With hope that the disaster may soon be receding, the COAD has its eyes on the future of economic developmen­t and preparedne­ss.

Perhaps Taos County Commission­er, District 3, Darlene Vigil said it best, “No one would wish this pandemic on any community, but through the strength and resilience of the COAD, we’ve not just survived, we’ve thrived.”

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