Organizations and health care providers in Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland counties were selected for grants that will help them improve health in their communities.
New Jersey Health Initiatives, the statewide grant-making program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, awarded 12 two-year grants for its Upstream Action Acceleration initiative, which aims to speed up work in priority health improvement areas.
Among the recipients are Allies In Caring Inc. for its Hammonton Health Coalition project; AtlantiCare Foundation for it’s AC Collaborative project in Atlantic City; Holly City Development Corporation for its Connecting Families to Communities project in Millville; and Cape Regional Medical Center for its Kicking ACES in Cape May County project.
Each two-year grant totals $100,000 and supports efforts to address social, economic and environmental factors known to influence health, like income, employment, education, housing, nutrition, childhood development and more.
Tom Piratzky, executive director of the Cape Regional Foundation, said the funds will be used to continue the health organization’s goal of reducing the effects of adverse childhood experiences in Lower Township, Middle Township, Wildwood and Woodbine.
The Cape Regional Wellness Alliance team includes representation from 32 organizations and has been developing and using an education program about ACES since 2016.
“We know that by partnering with diverse stakeholders such as residents, educators, law enforcement and elected officials, we can successfully address the factors that influence health,” Bob Atkins, director of New Jersey Health Initiatives, said in a statement.
Throughout the grant period, coalitions and organizations will get ongoing coaching, resources related to their initiatives, evaluation and communication support.
For its Hammonton Health Coalition project, Allies In Caring will focus on engaging more people in community initiatives, with specific focus on the Latino community, “because this group is particularly vulnerable,” director Ivette Guillermo-McGahee said in a statement.
“We believe that the most powerful strategy for improving health, well-being, safety, and raising healthy and productive children in Hammonton is to restore trust, build relationships, discover the gifts within every member of our community, and create opportunities to offer mutual support,” she said.
For more information on the initiative grant projects, see njhi.org.