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Princeton NJ Non-Profit Press Releases

I Am Trenton Foundation Funds Social Justice Projects

Trenton, NJ – I Am Trenton Community Foundation recently announced grant awards totaling $50,000 to grassroots community programs bringing together youth and local artists, telling important community stories and acknowledging shared struggles through its Citywide grant program.

I Am Trenton Community Foundation is an all-volunteer nonprofit putting resources where they matter most—in local projects run by residents. IAT raises funds for its citywide grants from individual donors and private funders, and has partnered with Isles since 2014 to administer grants in three Trenton neighborhoods as part of their respective revitalization plans, funded by the state's Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit (NRTC) Program.      

Since 2010, IAT has invested more than $300,000 in nearly 200 projects, which can be browsed in a new online directory

"The past year was a time of turmoil leading to change in our country, our city and our community," said IAT Board President Raj Manimaran. "We are proud to support Trenton residents working together to address inequity by engaging with our past to improve our future. These projects will make a lasting difference in our community."

The 2021 awards support efforts to celebrate and improve the city and advance social justice, particularly in the context of the ongoing pandemic.

"I am so honored to be counted among so many talented, passionate and social engaged individuals," said Jeffrey Stewart, whose grant will finance a documentary about the BLM/police brutality protests in Trenton during the summer of 2020.  "Even though we come from varied mediums, disciplines and backgrounds we all share a love for Trenton that few people from outside the city will truly understand. I am humbled and inspired to have been chosen for this grant and by the faith I Am Trenton has put into me and the "American Summer" project."

This is the most generous Citywide grant round in IAT history, thanks to support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and the Princeton University Black Leadership Coalition. Grant recipients include Zanobia Shaw, our youngest grantee so far, who will be leading United Front, a youth empowerment initiative engaging other Trenton high school students, as well as established community programs such as Trenton Music Makers and Passage Theatre. 

Trenton Music Makers received a grant for a Juneteenth Collaboration with young string players and local professional musicians Ahmad Shakir and Josue Lora. "We have a singular opportunity here to connect our players with exciting musicians from their own city; Josue's and DJ Ahmad's musical gifts are matched by an amazing heart for children," said Carol Burden, executive director of Trenton Music Makers. "Thanks to I Am Trenton, this project celebrating our city's own warmth and resiliency is being supported by our own community -- we are proud and honored."

Passage Theatre professionals, meanwhile, will partner with Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School of the Arts to tell the story history of the school's name and its effect on the racial integration of school systems throughout the United States. "We can't wait to collaborate with local students, to learn from them, and to find new ways to connect our past to our present," said C. Ryanne Domingues, theatre artistic director. "We believe bringing arts education to this talented group will deepen their understanding of history, while also teaching them skills they can use well into the future."

 

2021 Citywide Grant Recipients

?      Adam Nawrot - Trenton Makes Video Series

The "Trenton Makes" video series is a collection of short films dedicated to showcasing the craftspeople of Trenton, New Jersey.

 

?      Caitlin Fair - Council Cliff Notes

Council Cliff Notes is a series of short videos about various aspects of local government aiming to raise civic engagement in the city of Trenton.

 

?      Chosen Inspiration Association - Chosen to Inspire

Chosen to Inspire is a self-esteem enrichment, suicide prevention program that deters self-harm and helps teens view obstacles as challenges intended to maximize their full potential.

 

?      G-MOMS-MCSAP - Living Our Best Life

A picture book about ladies over 60, living in Trenton area being healthy and happy growing stronger in the Community.

 

?      Garden State Agrihood Project - Capital City Farm Urban Youth Environmental Stewards -- This is an urban farming and community development initiative to expose Trenton's youth to agriculture, environmental science through a social justice lens.
 

?      Habiyb Ali Shu'Aib - Time Is Still

Trenton photographer Habiyb Shu'Aib will create positive images of Trenton residents and install them on abandoned buildings.

 

?      Jeffrey Stewart – American Summer
A documentary about the BLM/police brutality protests in Trenton during the summer of 2020

 

?       KinderSmile Foundation - Access to Oral Health Care
The new KinderSmile Foundation Community Oral Health Center Trenton provides much needed access to oral health education and dental care to underserved and uninsured children and adults.

 

?      Mighty Writers - Bilingual learning loss prevention

Mighty Writers together with Urban Promise Trenton is providing online programming for young bilingual students to support them in their virtual learning.

 

?      Passage Theatre Company - The Hedgepeth-Williams Project

In partnership with Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School of the Arts, Passage Theatre will create and produce a new play about the history of the school's name and its effect on the racial integration of school systems throughout the United States.

 

?      PLAY SOCCER Nonprofit International (PSNI) - Trenton Youth Soccer League and the "Alliance"

PSNI will expand outreach of the free Trenton Youth Soccer League (TYSL)'s afterschool and summer program and work with partner organizations to develop a holistic after school / summer recreation effort.

 

?      Todd Evans - poetry through windows

A memorial poetry tribute to late Trenton Educator Poet Doc Long, featuring poems in Trenton's windows.

 

?      LALDEF (Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund) 

To improve equitable access to education by supporting promising high school seniors with their college applications/fees.

 

?      Trenton Animals Rock - Trenton Animals Rock Mural

Trenton Animals Rock will team up with a local mural artist to host a mural painting day at the Trenton Animal Shelter.

 

?      Trenton Cycling Revolution - D&R Canal Trail Bike Fixing Station

TCR will install a public bicycle repair station and pump alongside a sculptural kiosk and wayfinding station adjacent to the D&R Canal, providing free tools to the community.

 

?      Trenton Music Makers - Juneteenth Collaboration

  Trenton Music Makers will collaborate with Trenton musicians Ahmad Shakir, DJ, and

Josue Lora, Musician and Filmmaker to produce original musical performances.

 

?      United Front – A youth-led youth empowerment initiatives

 

To learn more about I Am Trenton and our work, please visit www.iamtrenton.org

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