The Gateway Family YMCA (TGFYMCA) led this two-year project to advance civic engagement in Elizabeth through solicitations for Neighborhood Project stipends and strategic Play Streets programming to increase utilization of existing parks. In addition, TGFYMCA is working to increase data sharing among its partner organizations through a common system. The Gateway Family YMCA and its key partners in the Shaping Elizabeth coalition, including the City of Elizabeth, Trinitas Regional Medical Center, the Housing Authority City of Elizabeth, Elizabeth Public Schools, the Community Food Bank, the Elizabeth Public Library, Groundwork Elizabeth and Rutgers Cooperative Extension, identified these priorities through their ongoing efforts to improve community health. In addition to expanding the coalition partnership in the first grant year, Shaping Elizabeth collaborated with the Elizabeth Next Generation Community Leaders to form a selection committee and criteria for the first round of Neighborhood Project stipends. The Neighborhood Health Services Corporation, a Federally Qualified Health Center, has implemented policy changes to offer healthier foods in the Center and incorporate food insecurity screenings during patients’ annual visits. Through this project, Shaping Elizabeth has equipped its partners and community members with the tools and skills to have their voices heard by local, county and state policy makers.
Chief Membership & Development Director
The Gateway Family YMCA Awarded Grant Funds from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
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