ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – One of Albuquerque’s largest municipal departments is being broken up into two. Family and Community Services will now be restructured into the “Health, Housing, and Homelessness” (HHH) and “Youth and Family Services” (YFS) departments.

The split comes as the city ramps up its services at the Gateway Center. The city says it can have one team dedicated to the ongoing homeless and mental health problems without sacrificing its attention on its youth programs, community centers, and educational initiatives.

HHH will be led by Director Carol Pierce who has 35 years of experience working in the health field throughout New Mexico. She has been the director of Family and Community Services since 2018 and previously worked for UNM Adolescent Medicine and the New Mexico Department of Health.

The YFS Department will be led by Director Katarina Sandoval and oversee youth programs, community centers, educational initiatives, child and family development, the Area Agency of Aging, and the new Pubilc Education Support division which will coordinate closely with APS. Previously, Sandoval was the Deputy Secretary of Finance and Operations and Academic Engagement and Student Success at the New Mexico Public Education Department.

The departments will continue to operate under the same budget for the rest of the fiscal year.