New Jersey Healthy Communities Network Announces $860,000 in Grants to 43 Organizations

Empowering Communities to Support Healthy Eating and Active Living

February 9, 2016


Trenton – February 9, 2016 – The New Jersey Healthy Communities Network, through a funding collaborative, awarded $860,000 to 43 nonprofit organizations to enhance the built environment and develop policies to support healthy eating and active living.  Grant awards are $10,000 per year for two years, with the stipulation that action plans and goals are being met by the end of year one.


“Our community grants program is made possible by the generous support of a funding collaborative,” said Bill Lovett, Executive Director of the New Jersey YMCA State Alliance.  “Their support allows us to not only award grants, but also to provide technical assistance and to develop an evaluation tool to measure the impact of the work.” 


Each member of the funding collaborative provides both financial and in-kind contributions such as website development, administrative support, or GIS mapping skills, for example, to the collective impact model.  The funding collaborative includes:  Atlantic Health System, New Jersey Department of Health, New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids (New Jersey YMCA State Alliance), Partners for Health Foundation, and Salem Health and Wellness Foundation.


Ashley Anglin, PhD, Coordinator-Healthy Communities Initiative for funding partner Atlantic Health System, shares “At Atlantic Health System, our vision is to empower our communities to be the healthiest in the nation, and we know that to achieve this vision we need to invest in our community partners, build lasting relationships, and promote policy and environmental change. We are proud to be a part of this effort.” As part of the collaborative, Ashley also serves as a regional technical assistance coach for a grantee cohort.


Each grant willaddressat leastonestrategyto increase opportunitiesfor physical activityand at leastonestrategytoimproveaccesstohealthyeating.  Funded organizations are required to engage a minimum of three community partners.  


Grantees include: (project location in parentheses)


Advocates for Children of New Jersey (Cumberland County, Atlantic City, Plainfield)


Bergen County Technical Schools (Paramus)


Borough of Lincoln Park (Lincoln Park)


Burlington County Community Action Program Head Start and Early Head Start (Willingboro)


Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers (Camden)


Center for Prevention and Counseling (Newton)


Clifton Health Department (Clifton)


CRSSA - Rutgers University (Elizabeth)


Cumberland Cape Atlantic YMCA (Atlantic City)


Greater Somerset Public Health Partnership (Hillsborough, Somerville, et al)


Grow It Green Morristown (Morristown)


Hunterdon County YMCA (Annandale)


Lakeland Hills Family YMCA (Mountain Lakes, Denville)


Meadowlink (Fanwood- Scotch Plains)          


Meadowlink (Long Branch)


Meadowlink (Plainfield)


Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges (East Orange)


Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges (Sussex County)


Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges (West Orange)


Morris Park Alliance (Morris County)


National Park School District (National Park)


Northwest NJ Community Action Program, Inc. (Sussex County)


Nutley Health Department (Township of Nutley)


Programs for Parents (Newark)


Raritan Bay Area YMCA (Perth Amboy)


Raritan Valley YMCA (North Brunswick, South Brunswick, Milltown, et al)


Rutgers Cooperative Extension, FCHS(Gloucester and Salem Counties)


RWJ University Hospital Foundation (New Brunswick)


Salem County Department of Health and Human Services (Oldmans Township)


SMILE for Charity (Passaic)


Somerset Healthcare Foundation (North Plainfield, Green Brook, Bridgewater)


The Gateway Family YMCA (Elizabeth)


The Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern New Jersey, Inc.  (Dover)


Township of Bloomfield Department of Health and Human Services  (Bloomfield)


Township of Hanover -Stoney Brook Farm (Township of Hanover)


Township of Montclair(Montclair)


Tri-State Transportation Campaign (Camden)


Union City Board of Education (Union City)


United Way of Passaic County (Passaic and Wayne)


Warren County Health Department (Warren County)


Woodbridge Dept of Health and Human Services (Woodbridge Township)


YMCA of Trenton (Trenton)


Among the 43 organizations receiving grants, project interventions include: park improvements, wellness policies, farmers markets, open streets, food audits, healthy corner stores, bike racks, walk/bike safety audits, and gardens.  All of the supported projects make the healthychoice the easy choice.  Besides technical assistance, other grantee benefits include: membership in a statewide cohort, capacity building webinars and meetings, social media coaching, peer-to-peer learning, and connection to resources and best practices.


Peri Nearon, Director of External Affairs and Strategic Initiatives for the New Jersey Department of Health, shared “This is only the beginning of a large scale health movement to create positive change – greater access to healthy food and opportunities to be physically active in all NJ neighborhoods, schools, childcare centers and worksites – where we live, learn, work and play.”


Since its inception in 2013, the signature community grants program awarded over $1.86 million in grants to grantees.  The New Jersey Healthy Communities Network also facilitates quarterly statewide Communities of Practice to share best practices, provide networking and professional development opportunities, and encourage collaboration.  Within these communities of practice, public health advocates are connected to other people and organizations with shared goals and agendas and are recognized as leaders in building healthy communities.    


To learn more, be a partner, participate in communities of practice, or join the funding collaborative, visit or email .


About the New Jersey Healthy Communities Network


The New Jersey Healthy Communities Network brings together local, regional, and statewide leaders to support communities in developing healthy eating and active living through enhancement of the built environment.  A collective impact model ensures that grantees, funder, and advocates are aligned in their work to build healthy environments for people to live, work and play. Web: Email: