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Regional Foundation Announces $1.95 Million in Grant Awards

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Today the Regional Foundation announced $1,950,000 in Implementation Grants to three organizations throughout New Jersey. The Neighborhood Implementation Grants program supports comprehensive community development plans that target specific neighborhoods, are resident-driven, and equity-focused. The multi-year funding is designed to assist the foundation’s grantee partners to start or sustain momentum in their comprehensive neighborhood revitalization initiatives.

“The grant investments announced today reflect the foundation’s ongoing commitment to sustained funding for our partners” stated Kevin Dow, Executive Director of the foundation. “Habitat and Parkside are strong partners doing amazing work including collaborations with other foundation partners and NJCDC is exciting as it moves our long-standing partnership from neighborhood planning to implementation and deepens our support in Paterson.”

The Neighborhood Implementation Grantees are:

(1)  Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newark will receive $300,000 to build on the last 5 years of implementation in Newark’s West and Central Village neighborhoods. Following the foundation’s initial $600,000 for planning and the first phase of implementation, Habitat is positioned to sustain its critically needed food distribution system created during its COVID-19 response. Habitat’s implementation work is rooted in addressing multiple social determinants of health and their cornerstone priorities are neighborhood building, healthy homes, community wellness, economic opportunity, and safety. Habitat will continue to distribute about 4,000 weekly meals andexpand its ID restoration program and re-entry work in partnership with local organizations. Strategies include growing the community’s Resource Hub, coordinated by staff and a local resident, to support connections to programs and resources and serve as a neighborhood meeting place.

(2)  New Jersey Community Development Corporation (NJCDC) will receive a grant investment of $1,000,000 over 5 years to support its Great Falls Neighborhood Plan completed in 2021, following an initial investment of $100,000 from the foundation. The resident-led and resident-driven plan illustrates how housing, education, creative placemaking, and open spaces can support the revitalization of this highly diverse neighborhood of Paterson—New Jersey’s third-largest city. NJCDC will serve as the backbone of a collaborative between Paterson Public Schools, the National Park Service, and multiple grassroots organizations solving food insecurity; supporting women and children; and providing family supports promoting education and youth development. Additionally, NJCDC aims to redistribute nearly half of its grant investment. On the horizon, NJCDC’s newest project is the development of a 56-unit “healthy homes” apartment building in partnership with Saint Joseph’s Health system and the creation of a business improvement district. NJCDC will also refresh its Community Advisory Board (CAB), hire paid Neighborhood Captains, and work closely with residents on progress throughout the grant period. Resources have also been allocated for participatory grant making, wherein the CAB will select local partners to receive mini- grants to further the overall Great Falls Neighborhood Plan.

(3)  Parkside Business & Community In Partnership (PBCIP) will receive its second Implementation Grant investment in the amount of $650,000 to continue the strong momentum of the past five years in the Parkside neighborhood of Camden, NJ and augment the foundation’s initial $1,250,000 investment. Utilizing a collaborative model with multiple partners, PBCIP will focus on housing and commercial acquisition as well as restoration, education, open spaces and healthy living, and neighborhood services. Reflecting its success, PBCIP partners with the Camden County Police to deliver a safe community. Key partnerships involve Hopeworks for youth employment training, Camden Parent and Student Union to advocate for quality education, Rowan University for food access, Latin American Economic Development Association (LAEDA) which is facilitating a thriving business corridor, Camden County Historical Society to leverage the cultural value of the neighborhood, and others to implement an array of activities over the next five years. PBCIP’s resident engagement strategies are embedded in its organizational structure and in all activities. Board members are 70% Parkside residents, and most staff live in the neighborhood.

Learn more here.

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