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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Pledges Donation for Sandy Recovery [AUDIO]

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has amped up its efforts to aid in the long-term Sandy recovery for New Jerseyans.

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Recovery Continues Two Weeks After Superstorm Sandy
Mario Tama, Getty Images

In the days right after the devastating storm, RWJF made a $250,000 grant to the Red Cross of Central New Jersey to support the agency’s emergency services. Additionally, a $250,000 grant was pledged to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey to help replenish food banks, shelters, soup kitchens, and other agencies in the hardest hit areas of the state.

Now they will do even more.

“And what we are committing to is another $4.5 million, so a total of $5 million, to help out in the recovery phase of Sandy,” said Dr. John Lumpkin, Senior Vice President of the foundation’s health care group.

The money will go towards rebuilding and social services support.

“Three months, six months, nine months down the road when all of the donations from outside the state go away, there are a lot of needs, like mental health needs and other health care-related needs that crop up,” said Lumpkin.

Lumpkin says the long-term phase of the recovery is going to be crucial, especially the mental aspect as people return home to destruction after being displaced by the storm.

“We think there’ll be a lot of problems that will need to be addressed, and we’re going to commit money to help address them,” he said.

Executives from the foundation will meet with state and local government agencies, as well as relief and social service organizations to assess needs around the state before determining how the funds will be dispersed.

“This is our home state, and what we hope to do is to ease the suffering of people who have been having their lives devastated by this storm. And we hope to make a difference.”

First Lady Mary Pat Christie says, “I applaud the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on its proactive approach to helping ease the devastation wrought on our communities. It is the generosity and ingenuity of groups like RWJF that makes our state so unique and makes me proud to be First Lady.”

You can learn more about the foundation by visiting www.rwjf.org.

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More Good News

Very Jersey Xmas

A group of New Jersey expats have banded together to launch a nationwide “Very Jersey Xmas” campaign to raise money for hurricane relief by calling on America to “Jersey up the Holidays” this year.  The campaign is calling on everyone who has ever lived in New Jersey, has family in New Jersey, or visited New Jersey to dedicate this holiday season by giving to New Jersey.  People can donate to the hurricane relief campaign of their choice www.veryjerseyxmas.fundly.com.

Mission Dance

Local New Jesey band Mission Dance is doing their part to help Hurricane Sandy victims.  On November 24, Mission Dance sponsored at special “Freehold Cares Concert” at The American Hotel.  All proceeds raised will go to The Union beach Disaster Relief Fund, which provides direct and immediate assistance to the community.  On November 25, Mission Dance spearheaded a “Freehold Cares Community Day” in Union Beach to assist cleanup efforts throughout the area.  To learn more about Mission Dance, visit www.missiondance.com.

Feed The Children

Earlier this month, Feed The Children supplied Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden, with over 640 cases of water, water filters, disaster kits, cleaning supplies, and portable storage bings to support those impacted by Hurricane Sandy.  The supplies were delivered to two disaster distribution points in Atlantic and Cape May Counties.  “The generosity of Feed The Children is a reminder that goodness abounds in the world,” said Kevin Hickey, Executive Director of Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden.  To learn more about Feed The Children and their efforts, visit www.feedthechildren.org.

Synchronoss Technologies

Synchronoss Technologies in Bridgewater has kicked off an initiative to raise money and offer support to families and communities throughout New Jersey that were impacted by Hurricane sandy.  The company’s “Synchronoss Cares” program is calling on all employes to help raise money or volunteer time to help those in need.  Everett Family Fund, Hurricane Sandy NJ Relief Fund and American Red Cross will be the recipients of the funds raised through “Synchronoss Cares.”  In addition, the company is donating $100,000 to kick off the program.

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