New Jersey First Lady Mary Pat Christie announced today that 18 organizations designated as New Jersey Heroes have been awarded a total of $120,000 in grants to enhance their missions with new programs and services.
A non-partisan, non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization founded by Mrs. Christie in 2010, NJ Heroes’ mission is to recognize, celebrate, and promote the Heroes of New Jersey who inspire fellow New Jerseyans to give back to their community. Since its inception, the organization has awarded approximately $320,000 in grants to 24 New Jersey non-profits.
“I am proud our New Jersey Heroes Foundation was able to expand its grant program for 2015 to help these remarkable organizations continue to do good work in their respective communities throughout the Garden State,” said Mrs. Christie. “Our New Jersey Heroes recipients represent such a broad coalition of causes that touch many people in so many ways. With these grants, we’re providing these groups with an opportunity to make an even greater difference by giving them the ability to improve and expand their programs to further reach community members in need.”
Of the 18 groups honored today, 3 are from Monmouth County:
- Breast Intentions, Middletown, (Erika Rech and Mike Ruane) ─ $2,769: Breast Intentions provides crisis intervention for women facing financial hardship during their battle against breast cancer. New Jersey Heroes is awarding $ 2,769 to help continue the organization’s program, called “Pink Pact”, which focuses on awareness by educating young women in college and high school about breast health, the need for regular breast examinations, and other preventative measures. Breast Intentions added three more high schools to its Pink Pact program in the fall of 2014 and hopes to add five more in the fall of 2015.
- Bridge of Books Foundation, Rumson,(Abby Daly) ─ $3,500: The Bridge of Books Foundation aims to provide an ongoing source of gently used and new books to underserved and at-risk children throughout New Jersey in order to support literacy skills and encourage a love of reading. New Jersey Heroes is awarding $3,500 to Bridge of Books for the purchase of books for juvenile detention centers, as well as pre-school bilingual books which are hard to come by through book donations alone.
- Operation Beachhead, Manasquan, (Michael Ricci) ─ $5,900: Operation Beachhead provides adaptive all-season sports activities to veterans, troops, disabled civilian individuals, and their families for the purpose of rehabilitation, inspiration, and recreation. New Jersey Heroes is awarding $5,900 to Operation Beachhead for the purchase of adaptive equipment to help disabled participants take part in the program, such as beach wheel chairs for summer or mono-skis for winter activities. The program which has expanded vastly over the years, now benefits over 400 participants and their families.