New community group pushes young people to get involved in serving ABQ | KOB 4

New community group pushes young people to get involved in serving ABQ

Joy Wang
March 17, 2018 09:31 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Millennials sometimes get a bad reputation for being self-centered and entitled, but a new group in the Duke City is working to repel that stigma by improving their community.


I only officially launched last week, but Serve ABQ is already making a difference in Albuquerque.

"We made some partnerships with community organizations. Our first community partner (was) Heading Home, the homeless shelter," said Brendon Gray of Serve ABQ. "We've worked with them a few times; we just recently closed up their winter shelter down there."

But there's a lot more work to be done, and a lot of passion to be shown by Albuquerque's young residents. Gray said some of those Millennials may have a hard time channeling that passion.

"(There's) not a lot of ways to engage – intentionally engage – with the community," he said. "So that's exactly what Serve ABQ is designed to do."

Gray refers to the young organization as a community network of young professionals trying to invest their talents and skills in the communities that need it the most.

"(We're trying to) look at service not just as going out on a weekend or once every quarter or picking up some trash, but looking at service as a culture and as a way of life," he said.

He said he hopes that in the long run Serve ABQ becomes a non-profit to help retain talent in our state – something he called a continuing issue.

"One of the biggest problems is brain drain in Albuquerque, and in New Mexico as a whole," Gray said. "If we can provide a space for young people to invest their time and their passion productively in our communities, people will stay here and fall in love."

Much like he has. Gray, an economics and political science major at UNM, is Albuquerque-born-and-bred.

Whatever he does in the future, he says, he wants it to involve giving back to the city he's fallen in love with.

With Serve ABQ, he's now working to bring other local young people into the fold, one service project at a time.

"(We're trying to) break down those barriers and put our time and our energy and our skills into those communities," he said.


Joy Wang

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