The NJ Children’s System of Care (CSOC), Monmouth County, and MonmouthCares are interested in expanding services and programs for youth in the county with mental health, behavioral health, intellectual disabilities, and substance use needs. This one-time funding of $25,000 (less may be applied for) becomes available July 1st each year must be utilized by June 30 of the following year. Proposals submitted must either be a one-time initiative that can have a sustained impact or serve as seed money to initiate a new resource. Applicants must commit to working in partnership with MonmouthCares, other system partners, and community-based resources. They must embody the values of the NJ Children’s System of Care.
All applications will be reviewed and scored via a panel consisting of MonmouthCares’ Manager of Community Relations and Resource Development, MonmouthCares’ Board Members, and various members of the System of Care.
There have been noted gaps and needs in quality, community-based mental health services through various system-wide surveys and needs assessments. While the proposals do not have to narrowly target any one population, keeping the identified needs of our county is advised.
The priority needs for funding identified are (no order of priority):
- Social Skills programming for all ages, specifically programs that target 18-21-year old’s and high functioning youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder
- After school programs that provide recreational and psycho-educational opportunities (I.e.: yoga, meditation, mindfulness, diversity, etc.)
- LGBTQ+ focused programming for youth and families
- Vocational programming for youth 14-21 who are preparing to transition to adulthood
*The barriers and needs have been collected from various sources:
- The Children’s Interagency Coordinating Council (CIACC)
- The Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) of the Child Advocacy Center
- The Youth Services Commission (YSC), and
- MonmouthCares’ Staff
All applicants must demonstrate the ability to manage the finances and implement the practice/program applied for in their application. Applicants must agree to submit comprehensive reports on December 31st, March 31st, and June 15th in the fiscal year the funding is year applied for.
Each July, MonmouthCares makes these funds available for community agencies to apply for. Please contact Chad Majczan, Manager of Community Relations and Resource Development at [email protected] or 732-222-8008 x159 with any questions, concerns, or to gain information on applying for these funds.
Congratulations to Give a Kid a Dream New Jersey! Their proposal to expand their Champions for Life Program was scored the highest by our review committee and was awarded our full $25,000 for 2019-2020.
The Give A Kid A Dream Program was established in 1991 to provide boxing instruction to at-risk children at one of the sport’s most renowned focal points, Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, New York. In 2012, Jacklyn Atkins partnered with Bruce Silverglade, owner, to create Gleason’s Jersey Shore gym. Years prior, Atkins revived the 20-year old Long Branch PAL boxing program and developed the CHAMPIONS OF LIFE Concept. The Champions of Life concept teaches youth to not only declare themselves champions in the ring but to strive to become champions in life. In 2018 Atkins combined the existing Long Branch PAL youth boxing program with the newly formed non-profit New Jersey Give a Kid a Dream (NJGAKAD).
The Champions for Life Program encompasses many facets and is the main program supporting NJGAKAD's mission.
- The first arm of the program is exercise and nutrition. Participants receive an individualized exercise program tailored to their needs and are educated on proper nutrition. Participants receive strength and conditioning training, as well as boxing and martial arts training.
- The second arm of the program is educational assistance. Participants received assistance from qualified individuals and will have access to technology and an e-learning system. Time is given for the completion of homework while at the gym and there is support with assigned projects.
- The third arm of the program is life-skills. Through boxing, lecture and various activities, participants learn various life-skills such as healthy relationships, self-control, critical thinking, assertiveness, etiquette, self-directed engaged learning. Mentors implement off-site training as well to allow youth opportunities and positive life experiences.
- The fourth arm of the Program is mental health and well-being. A qualified individual is available to provide assessments and mental health counseling to those in need.
- The fifth arm of the program is Case Management. Everyone is assessed for needs and referrals are made to various other services located throughout the county.
MonmouthCares' Community Resource Development Funds will be utilized by Give a Kid a Dream New Jersey in order to expand their capacity to permanently serve children in this program.