Jersey City Mayor Steven M. Fulop announced on Thursday more than 150 grant recipients for the first-ever round of funding administered from his COVID-19 Community Relief Distribution Fund.
The $2 million fund, which was raised through private donations, will directly support community-based firms, revitalize the arts community and enhance the city’s youth-based summer and enrichment programs.
The 154 organizations were selected to receive grants between $5,000 and $65,000. The awardees include 119 artists and arts organizations, 12 summer youth nonprofits, 11 art program organizations and 12 community-based organizations. Funds will be distributed through the Jersey City Economic Development Corp.
“We have been working proactively throughout this pandemic to prepare for the aftermath and to be able to provide as much assistance as possible to our severely impacted community,” Fulop said. “True heroes have emerged in recent months, from our first responders and frontline workers to those who have generously donated to the Relief Fund and the community organizations who are committed to reopening; and we need to continue working together to ensure a recovery that will revitalize and rebuild our foundation for a sustainable future.”
The largest of the grants include:
- $65,000 to the Jersey City Parks Coalition to help maintain all city parks and open spaces;
- $50,000 to the Hudson County Boys & Girls Club and $50,000 to New City Kids, to address youth engagement and develop new programs.
“I always wanted to open an arts center for the kids of this community where I was born and raised, but a month after my grand opening the pandemic hit and it went downhill fast. I’ve been through so much. This money couldn’t have come at a better time, and I’m just so grateful that someone thought of me, to help me in turn help families also dealing with their own issues amid this crisis,” Naquasha Hawkins, grant recipient and Creative Kidz founder and CEO, said.