Our Faith in Prevention program has gained regional and national visibility in its first two years of operation, and applications are now open for year three. This year we’re focused on making the program better than ever for Camden-area faith-based organizations (FBOs) seeking training and funding to promote health and togetherness in their communities, while also making sure that alumni FBOs stay connected to the city’s health and wellness resources.

We are seeking 20 faith based organizations (such as churches, mosques, and synagogues) to take part in this year’s Faith in Prevention program. Participating organizations will be trained to deliver the Faithful Families Eating Smart and Moving More curriculum to their congregations, and will be able to apply for $3,500-$5,000 for creative projects to promote the health of their congregations and communities.

Many FBOs choose to use their funding to start fruit and vegetable gardens, and this year FBOs will be able to get gardening help from local students. Facilitated by our longtime gardening partner, Jonathan Weinstein of Parkside’s Roots to Market, botany students from Camden’s Big Picture Academy will spend the summer helping our FBO members learn to grow fresh and healthy food for their communities.

As we continue to build out year three of Faith in Prevention we want to make sure that our alumni FBOs aren’t losing their commitment to healthy lifestyles after their participation in the program is over. We are connecting alumni FBOs with Get Healthy Camden (GHC), a citywide campaign working to create a culture of health in the city. As Soley Berrios, Program Assistant for Community Engagement at the Camden Coalition, writes on the New Jersey Healthy Communities blog:

“The [Get Healthy Camden] campaign has created partnerships across the city that will be able to plug our FBO alumni into additional resources, while keeping them focused on the larger goal of better health for their communities. In addition, including the FBO alumni will be a great asset to the campaign, since these faith-based leaders are a trusted voice in all of the neighborhoods of the city that they represent. By participating in GHC, they will be able to continue impacting their congregants and their families.”

Alumni FBOs will be meeting with Get Healthy Camden representatives on Monday, February 27 at Kaighn Avenue Baptist Church in Camden. For more information about applying to become a Faith in Prevention participant, visit our webpage and download the application packet. To learn more about our partnership with Get Healthy Camden, please contact Soley Berrios at sberrios@camdenhealth.org.

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