The Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey recently awarded 18 grants totaling over $1.8 million to improve the health and wellness of underserved and vulnerable populations in greater Newark and surrounding low income NJ communities.
The foundation’s work on integrating mental health and primary care services for children and adults continued with two grants totaling$475,000 to Newark Beth Israel Medical Center for its Pediatric and Adult Ambulatory Care Clinics. These third-year awards are changing the hospital’s approach to caring for patients and connecting patients to needed behavioral health services within the primary care practices or, in more serious cases, to behavioral health practitioners within the hospital’s broader setting.
Several grants tackling the social determinants of health were awarded. These include $144,200 to the University Hospital Foundation for continued support of its groundbreaking Violence Prevention Program; $100,000 to the Community Foundation of NJ for Double Up NJ food bucks for SNAP recipients; and $81,000 to the Ironbound Community Corporation and $70,000 to the Greater Newark Conservancy for food programs for low-income families and seniors respectively;
Efforts to educate the public and key decision-makers about healthcare and healthy living issues continued with grants to the Caucus Educational Corp. and the Community Foundation of NJ for njspotlight.com totaling $125,000, enabling both organizations to expand their coverage of important issues relevant to the local community. A grant of $63,134 was awarded to Catholic Charities for an initiative to provide health literacy and services to the homeless.
Finally, several grants to improve the health and well-being of people with special needs or mental health issues were awarded. Among them were a grant of $212,500 to JESPY House, to improve the ability of its staff to meet the needs of its aging population with developmental disabilities; approximately $100,000 to Jewish Family Service of MetroWest NJ to provide mental health services to adolescents and support to caregivers of the elderly or chronically ill; $78,000 to Wynona’s House to continue to develop its program training volunteers to provide support to families with children in its care; and $42,460 to Caldwell University to continue the expansion of its Art Therapy Department, one of the only institutions that graduates students with dual degrees in counseling and art.