Giving. Without the Guesswork.

We love New Jersey. For starters, its beautiful beaches, great food, diverse people, stellar schools, and vibrant arts and culture scene. It has farms, mountains, lively cities, and quaint towns. That’s why so many people who live here feel inspired to give so much back. This Giving Guide can help you do the same.

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  • Center for Investigative Reporting

    CIR empowers the public through investigative journalism and groundbreaking storytelling that sparks action, improves lives and protects our democracy. Its reporting holds the powerful accountable and reveals government fraud, human rights violations, environmental degradation, and threats to public safety so that citizens can take action. Here in New Jersey, CIR partnered with local journalists to produce the year-long Dirty Little Secrets project, an investigation into the state’s toxic legacy. The project generated more than a dozen news stories and presented fact-based information in engaging and exciting new ways, including an original play and stand-up comedy show. But their work won't end there. Your support to this nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization will fund new reporting that protects the public and further explores the powerful intersection of high quality journalism and the arts.

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  • Community Soup Kitchen and Outreach Center

    At the Community Soup Kitchen and Outreach Center in Morristown, a warm bowl of soup is more than just a meal. It is a lifeline. Even in this wealthy community, more than a quarter of households struggle to put food on their table and meet basic needs. The Soup Kitchen’s friendly, dedicated staff and volunteers provide healthy food, a dose of hospitality and comfort to anyone who walks through their doors – no questions asked. They also connect individuals in need with community resources and services, like mental health counseling, substance abuse help and job training. And in 30 years, the Soup Kitchen has never missed a day. Because they are always there when the community needs them most, please support them today. Connect: @CommSoupKitchen

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  • Creative New Jersey

    Creative New Jersey brings people together to find creative solutions to community problems. A statewide initiative launched by the Dodge Foundation, Creative NJ is dedicated to fostering creativity and collaboration throughout New Jersey. Creative NJ has held 16 convenings since 2011, working with 152 partnering organizations and more than 1,000 participants in communities ranging from Atlantic City and Trenton to Rahway and Sandy-ravaged Highlands. From these Calls to Collaboration, new partnerships are flourishing and creative ideas are taking hold. Creative New Jersey believes deeply that the only way to meet today’s complex challenges is by solving them together, with people from all fields and backgrounds. Your donation today will support their video project, so they can champion the creativity and innovative collaborations of New Jersey’s citizens! Connect via Twitter @creativenj

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  • Free Press

    Journalism needs community support, and communities need the support of local journalists. That simple idea drives Free Press’ News Voices: New Jersey project. Free Press has helped lead the fight to protect the free and open Internet — we have their mobilizing work to thank for Net Neutrality — and is working to revitalize quality local journalism right here in the Garden State. Free Press is hosting forums in cities around New Jersey to help close information gaps and help newsrooms and communities collaborate on newsgathering. Free Press envisions a world where people have the information and opportunities they need to tell their own stories, hold leaders accountable, and participate in policymaking. You can help make this vision real in your community by supporting their work today. Connect via Twitter @freepress.

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  • Greater Newark Conservancy

    Greater Newark Conservancy’s mission is to make New Jersey cities greener and healthier places to live by encouraging citizens to become good stewards of their environment. Conservancy staff roll up their sleeves alongside residents to plant trees, build community, create pocket parks, and educate about the issues affecting neighborhoods and community well-being. The Conservancy runs two urban farms totaling 3.5 acres in the heart of Newark; in 2014, those farms have produced more than 50,000 pounds of fresh produce that is sold at significantly reduced prices at youth-run farmstands around the City. More than 800 formerly incarcerated and at-risk young adults have helped green vacant lots and build and harvest those farms through the Conservancy's Clean and Green transitional jobs program. In addition, Greater Newark Conservancy works in urban public schools to educate school children about healthy eating and creates outdoor garden classrooms to teach about the environment with math, science and literacy. Please give now.

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  • GreenFaith

    Green Faith believes that “protecting the earth is a religious value, and that environmental stewardship is a moral responsibility.” Like the certification programs of Sustainable Jersey (you can find them in this Guide, too), GreenFaith encourages houses of worship — of all faiths — across the state to become sustainability leaders. It has helped religious groups cut energy use, costs and carbon footprints through its energy audit and green purchasing programs. And it recognizes that one of the most powerful ways to make an impact is to connect congregations with the spirituality of the natural world through environmentally themed worship services, religious education and spiritual practices. These steps may seem small alone – but together they are vital in helping to redeem this planet. Your donation will help GreenFaith reach more of New Jersey’s 7,000 faith-based institutions.

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  • Grow It Green Morristown

    Have you ever seen the look on a child’s face when they eat a cherry tomato straight from the vine for the first time? The initial look of surprise — eyebrows raised, eyes crinkled — turns to wide smiles of joy quickly as the sun-warmed tomato pops and releases its tart sweetness. That moment is what Grow It Green Morristown is all about. Its gardens in the heart of bustling Morristown are places of communal discovery, green refuges where all are welcome to pick up a shovel and learn where food comes from. In just five years, this organization has become absolutely integral to Morristown. Beyond affecting the lives of more than thousands of students and their families through school visits and farmstand sales, they also supply local food pantries with fresh produce. They are growing more than vegetables, they are growing community. Please show your support for this organization.

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  • Leadership Newark

    Do you believe a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world? So does Leadership Newark. Founded in 1998 to inspire a new generation of leaders in Newark, the organization offers two-year public policy fellowship to a class of 30 emerging and established leaders committeed to the betterment of the city. The fellowship is an experiential leadership development program, which offers a curriculum that includes taking part in site visits, keynote addresses, roundtable discussions and debates in the first year. In the second year, the Fellows are challenged to go out in the community and oversee a project that will create a lasting benefit for the City, bridge gaps in service and foster new partnerships. The individuals who graduate from Leadership Newark are pro-active, engaged leaders who are committed to a shared vision for the City. If you believe in Newark, New Jersey’s largest city, please support this organization.

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  • NJ Spotlight

    You don’t have to look hard to find political corruption in New Jersey. Sunlight, as the former Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis wrote, is said to be the best of disinfectants. Exposing the truth and holding leaders accountable is core to the mission of NJ Spotlight, the only member-supported, nonprofit newsroom that focuses exclusively on New Jersey statewide politics and policy. NJ Spotlight publishes in-depth, award winning news and analysis at a time when policymakers and the public grapple with such complex issues as healthcare reform, public safety, and public employee pension reform. They delve into the debates that impact your wallet and well-being. They are fiercely nonpartisan, policy-centered, and community-minded. Your support will ensure our state has access to strong, independent public service reporting.

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  • Clean Ocean Action

    If you love the Jersey Shore – and we know you do – then surely you want to keep the beaches clean and the water safe to swim in. Yet, our ocean and beaches face threats from all kinds of pollution. You didn’t know that, you say? That’s because Clean Ocean Action is living up to its name. They work every single day to protect your beloved Jersey Shore from toxins and trash in the water and on the beaches. On top of that, their volunteers have picked up over 2.25 million pieces of trash – 606,000 pounds! – since 1993, not including the tremendous help they gave to Hurricane Sandy clean-up. Show your love for the Shore by supporting the work of Clean Ocean Action.

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  • Clean Water Fund

    We all deserve clean drinking water from the tap, clean air to breathe, parks within walking distance, and pollution-free rivers to fish, canoe and kayak. From the Highlands and Pinelands to the Delaware River and Jersey Shore, Clean Water Fund collaborates with communities to create innovative solutions that improve the environment, health, economy and quality of life for all. Did you know that every time it rains, many places are flooded with a slurry of sewage and waste? Clean Water Fund is working with Newark communities and a network of partners to put an end to that, creating models for green infrastructure and climate resiliency that have other health and economic benefits as well. Because everyone deserves the opportunity to enjoy a long and healthy life regardless of where they live, please support Clean Water Fund. Connect via Twitter @CleanWaterNJ

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  • Foodshed Alliance

    In the 2015 Locavore Index, a ranking of states’ commitment to local food production, New Jersey ranked 39th out of the 50 states. Why is the “Garden State” in this position? Should something happen to disrupt our food supply chains, could New Jersey feed itself? The Foodshed Alliance works at the intersection of food, farming and the environment to foster a self-sustaining foodshed that supports farmers, nourishes people, respects the land and strengthens our communities. They promote closer connections between eaters and those who grow and produce our food and support food entrepreneurs with the goal of rebuilding the food infrastructure. They run a gleaning program that delivers farm-fresh food to soup kitchens and food pantries, and they operate farmers markets and run educational events. If you value the food on your plate, please support this organization. Connect via Twitter @FoodshedNJ

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  • Isles, Inc.

    Isles fosters a sense of community, of making something with your own hands, of belonging to a group that is working to make the Trenton region a better, more beautiful place to live. Their work touches all parts of community life: they turn vacant lots and underutilized spaces into gardens and parks, they restore run-down homes, train community members of the community and prepare them for green jobs and provide a school for students who have dropped out. They accomplish this by giving people skills and opportunities to become leaders in their neighborhoods, to have a voice and be powerful. Support Isles to help them support the people of Trenton.

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  • New Jersey Highlands Coalition

    The New Jersey Highlands is a patchwork of preserved farms, quaint hamlets and bustling city centers dotted with large swaths of forest, lakes and clear-running rivers and streams. But did you know that these natural landscapes are also the sources of the drinking water for more than 5 million New Jersey residents? Probably the water in your house, too. Without the hard work of the New Jersey Highlands Coalition — a network of individuals and organizations committed to protecting the land and water within the Highlands region — we wouldn’t have access to high-quality drinking water straight from our faucets. If it is important to you that your drinking water remains clean and plentiful, the Highlands Coalition is an important group to support.

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  • New Jersey Tree Foundation

    The NJ Tree Foundation transforms neighborhoods from concrete corridors to lush, green oases with one elegantly simple idea: bringing residents together to plant trees and make their communities beautiful. In 17 years, the organization has planted more than 200,000 trees in cities that need them most, including Asbury Park, Newark and Camden. Last year alone, 7,340 volunteers contributed 17,487 hours to planting and maintaining trees. And that’s not all. The Tree Foundation offers statewide landscaping and tree planting services, fruit tree plantings and green infrastructure development. If you’ve ever admired the simple beauty of a tree in your neighborhood, please support this organization.

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  • Northeast Organic Farming Association of NJ

    The Northeast Organic Farming Association is training the next generation of farmers, helping to keep New Jersey’s farming heritage alive and thriving. Which, in turn, means that we will continue to have access to fresh foods being grown by farmers and their families right here in our state. Young farmers receive mentorship, and more importantly support to get their businesses off the ground. The organization also hosts a popular food and agriculture conference, produces an annual guide to farms, restaurants and markets in NJ, and advocates for policies to improve the environmental, economic and social impacts of our food system. If you get a smile on your face when you think about the joy of tasting Jersey-grown tomatoes, corn or peaches, you can thank the farmers who grew them by making a donation today.

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  • NY/NJ Baykeeper

    Baykeeper is the voice of the Hudson-Raritan Estuary, the system of bays and rivers where the Hudson, Hackensack, Passaic, Rahway, and Raritan rivers meet the Atlantic Ocean. Despite a long history of industrial pollution, today it is home to clams, oysters, egrets, blue herons, and increasingly is becoming a favorite place for boaters and kayakers to explore. That’s because of the work of the Baykeeper, who, in addition to stopping polluters and restoring oyster habitat, has helped preserve more than 2,500 acres of open space in the Harbor Estuary, opening up public access to this wet wilderness. If you want to see this progress continue, your support is important now more than ever.

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  • Pinelands Preservation Alliance

    What is that odd forest you drive through on your way to the Jersey shore? This mysterious green forest, prone to wildfires and tales of the Jersey Devil, is the largest open space on the eastern seaboard between Maine and the Florida Everglades. It is 1.1 million acres of forest, wetlands, cranberry and blueberry farms, and historic villages. It protects one of the largest freshwater aquifers in the United States. And it is terribly vulnerable. The Pinelands Preservation Alliance has been working for 26 years to protect the Pinelands. There is constant pressure on state agencies to waive or ignore the rules that protect the Pinelands.Their expertise in the rules that protect the Pinelands allows them to engage thousands of people each year in meaningful actions to protect it. This year they launched Pinelands Adventures, a new outdoor recreation service, making it easier for people to experience the Pines. If you love New Jersey’s wild spaces, please support them. Connect @PinesAlliance

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  • Student Conservation Association

    The Student Conservation Association provides real world job opportunities for kids in high school and college to maintain and improve our state and county parks, trails, cultural landmarks and other outdoor areas that we flock to. Not only are these kids blossoming into our next generation of environmental caretakers through hands-on service, they are also providing extra manpower to our communities, making them better, more beautiful places to live. Support the students – give to the SCA.

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  • 10 Hairy Legs

    You can probably tell from the name that 10 Hairy Legs is not afraid to break molds about what contemporary dance is supposed to be. The mission of the all-male dance company is to advance the understanding of the male role in dance through the creation, acquisition and performance of exceptional work. The ensemble and its productions are highly acclaimed and intentionally diverse. It’s added dancers, including women for special projects, and 12 world premiere commissions from renowned choreographers since its 2012 founding by acclaimed choreographer, dancer, educator and New Jersey native Randy James. If you share these dynamic dancers’ vision to inspire, create, educate, and challenge gender stereotypes through dance, please show your love today.

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  • ArtPride New Jersey

    When was the last time you got lost in a painting, the rhythms of a symphony or the constructs of a play? Thanks to New Jersey’s cultural richness, you don’t have to go far to enter a world of wonder. From city to shore and everywhere in between, ArtPride New Jersey advances a state of creativity by working to support arts funding, developing policies that invest in the arts and reinforcing the importance of the arts to our communities. Your donation to ArtPride is an investment in the future of our state’s creative culture.

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  • Artworks Trenton

    Artworks Trenton is more than a place to make art. Walk into its downtown visual arts center, and you’ll meet people as passionate about the arts as they are about building a better future for New Jersey’s capital city. Artworks collaborates with a tapestry of Trenton organizations to promote artistic diversity, foster creativity and inspire the next generation of artists. Its classes, exhibitions and events make art accessible to all. If you believe the arts can save lives and transform a neglected city into a thriving community, please make a donation to Artworks.

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  • Crossroads Theatre Company

    Theater enables us to experience people, places, and cultures with which we might not otherwise connect. Crossroads Theatre Company has a unique focus on presenting plays that examine the African-American experience through the lens of major African-American playwrights for a widely diverse audience. Founded in New Brunswick in 1978, Crossroads has performed more than 175 works, many of which were premiere productions, which adds to the cultural mosaic and broadens the theater audience. If lifting up African American voices is important to you, please support Crossroads.

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  • Monmouth Museum

    Museums are places of ideas and discovery. The Monmouth Museum focuses on just that. A popular destination for art lovers and families alike, the museum boasts two expansive art galleries and two different exhibition areas for children where learning is an active process. The WonderWing, an under-the-sea exploratory area, engages little ones under age 6. The Becker Children's Wing enables older children to embark on hands-on S.T.E.A.M in Action experiences exploring art, science and history. The new Meyer Arts & Nature Area will get the kids outside and provides all visitors an opportunity to take part in arts and environmental programming in a natural outdoor setting. And the Monmouth Museum is committed to featuring and nurturing emerging artists so there's always a reason to return. Need we say more? Support them today.

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  • Morris Arts

    At its heart, and it has a big one, Morris Arts' is a community organization working to bring people together around the arts. In bustling Morristown, this organization is the driver of the community’s transformation, facilitating opportunities for fun, connection and creativity. Its Meet Me In Morristown packs the downtown summer evenings with residents and families from Morristown and surrounding communities eager to take in the lively, authentic arts scene and take part in collaborative art projects. Add to that the impact of Morris Arts’ education programming in county schools, their curated exhibitions, and the success of their advocacy to help establish public art in Morristown, and you’ve got many reasons to support this precious community resource. Connect @MorrisArts

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  • Newark Arts

    Newark has long been a place where art and artists thrive, but perhaps never has the Brick City had so much to offer than it does right now. World-class performance centers, art galleries and studios galore, a diverse mix of cultural institutions, and an ever-growing array of murals, public art sculptures, pop-up exhibitions, and maker spaces make Newark one of New Jersey’s most creative cities. We have Newark Arts to thank for all they’ve done to inspire, advocate, and coordinate the city’s independent artists and more than 60 arts organizations, through its ArtStart grants for children and community artists, its Open Doors weekend arts extravaganza, and other enriching programs. Do you want to see Newark’s arts renaissance continue? Please show your love today.

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  • New Jersey Repertory Company

    There’s something special about New Jersey Repertory Company, the Long Branch theater that specializes in premiering new plays and revisiting forgotten classics. Its Main Stage is host to an incredible cast of artists who do more than entertain (and they sure do). Its programs inspire powerful experiences that transform lives. Take the story of one graduate of their Young Playwrights Project – an 18-year-old who wrote a play that dealt with visiting his mother’s grave after Hurricane Sandy to share with her the struggles of his adoptive family after the storm. Writing the play and taking to the stage to talk about it enabled him to see himself in a new light – as someone who could go to college and rewrite his own story. Support NJ Rep and keep this theater’s magic alive. Connect via Twitter @NJrep.

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  • Nimbus Dance Works

    Nimbus Dance Works uses dance to bring the community together. They teach and perform dance because they believe there’s no better way to embody emotional expression and camaraderie. Their approach centers not only on excellence but how to connect with the Jersey City community, youth, and the larger dance community, collaborating with artists around the world. Their school serves 100 young dancers, they work with about a dozen New Jersey schools and colleges, and their dancers — who hail from around the world — perform concerts throughout the Northeast. Their largest, most successful performance is Jersey City Nutcracker, which puts a local, urban spin on the holiday story. How cool. If you share Nimbus’ love for all kinds of dance and community, please support them. Connect @NimbusDance

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  • Passage Theatre Company

    Art has the power to save lives and transform neighborhoods from forgotten, forlorn places to thriving colorful communities. Passage Theatre Company is dedicated to lifting up the people and places around Trenton through innovative theatre and art programs, especially for the youth of Trenton. They’ve been doing it for nearly 30 years, and still, they remain one of the most creative and compassionate theatre companies in New Jersey. As others have left Trenton, Passage remains committed to giving people creative outlets, helping them tell their stories, and bringing the joy of theatre to their lives. If theatre has ever made a difference in your life, please make a donation to Passage.

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  • Camden Repertory Theater

    Camden Repertory Theatre is dedicated to providing transformative opportunities for urban communities through the power of performing arts. With innovative works directed by acclaimed artists, Camden Rep has produced nearly a dozen mainstage plays that broaden cultural horizons. Through its Preparing Artists for College Entrance program, high school students get intensive training that instills in them the importance of hard work and provides the necessary tools and self-confidence to excel in arts and pursue college degrees. Your support gives Camden youth a hand up through the arts.

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  • coLAB Arts

    CoLAB Arts’ vision is to create more livable, sustainable, and exciting environments through art. Its work takes place in community rooms, houses of worship, parking lots, schools, bars, and backyards. A "let’s get it done" work ethic and flair or mischief colors coLAB Arts’ aesthetic and an emphasis on community engagement and professional development defines its commitment to the arts. Recently, their creative projects have tackled homelessness in New Brunswick, community health problems from a chemical spill in Paulsboro, and the declining health of the Lower Raritan Watershed. If you believe artistic expression can advance civic engagement, please support coLAB Arts.

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  • Educational Arts Team

    Educational Arts Team offers programs designed to promote critical literacy, not just rote technical literacy. Its Dramatic Impact program brings engaging, experiential activities into grade 3 to 8 language arts classrooms, helping students improve reading comprehension. Their approach encourages deep learning and social skill development to meet the needs of all students through drama, writing, storytelling, puppetry, music, dance and visual art activities as strategies to teach core lessons. Outside the classroom, they also run an arts camp at Liberty State Park that has served thousands of young people in Jersey City with educational, recreational and cultural activities during the summer months. If you believe the arts enhance learning, please support them today. Connect: @edartsteam

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  • Field Trip New Jersey

    Remember field trips? Chances are that you don't remember many of the lessons you learned in the classroom, but you probably have a vivid field trip memory that sticks out. Field trips bring learning to life and enable students to envision themselves as future college students, researchers, artists, and leaders. But it has become difficult for schools to fund learning opportunities outside schools. The greatest barrier? Transportation costs. Enter Field Trip New Jersey, a new fund that provides field trip grants to schools in underserved communities across New Jersey. In its pilot year, this support made it possible for thousands of students to visit arts and culture sites, historic landmarks, nature preserves, science institutions, and college campuses across the state. Your donation will help us power more field trips, and inspire more young people to imagine brighter futures.

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  • GlassRoots

    GlassRoots devotes itself to fanning the embers of creativity in youth and young adults until they burn hot enough to forge bright futures. Their Newark hotshop is more than a glassmaking studio — it is a place where young people learn to focus, solve problems, and create futures. Students work together to form glass art in the 2,200-degree heat of GlassRoots’ furnace, use gas torches to melt glass and create fine jewelry and scientific glassware in their flameworking studio, explore the ancient art of mosaics and more modern techniques in their flat shop, and bring business and entrepreneurship to life in their classrooms. For over 15 years, GlassRoots has proven it’s possible to marry art and entrepreneurship through real life applications of talent, interest and skills. Help ignite a passion for creativity and transform the future of GlassRoots students; please support this organization.

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  • Institute of Music for Children

    The Institute of Music for Children is a haven for young people in Elizabeth. It offers arts and music programs that give kids in kindergarten through high school the skills, confidence, and creative outlet they need to succeed in life. Study after study shows that kids from low income backgrounds succeed in school at much higher rates when they have access to arts education programs. The Institute knows this well, and so do parents, who are clamoring for these programs – especially because the arts are always the first to be cut from our schools when budgets are tight. With your donation, you can bring the joy of arts and music to kids in Elizabeth, giving them more opportunities to succeed in school and in life.

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  • Trenton Children's Chorus

    Trenton Children’s Chorus kicked off the year with a performance at the White House before the President and Mrs. Obama. For the group of young singers, it was an unforgettable experience – endless hours of rehearsals culminating in a flawless execution of their craft, with a trip outside Trenton to Washington, DC, to boot. In its 26th year, the Chorus today offers music education and performance opportunities to the 140 singers in grades K-12, plus drumming instruction, music theory instruction, mentorship, tutoring, SAT prep, college application help and summer camp scholarships. Everything the Chorus does is about instilling joy, pride and confidence. And no child is ever denied participation because of their family’s finances. Please support them today to ensure it stays that way. Connect: @trentonchorus

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  • Trenton Public Education Foundation

    The Trenton Public Education Foundation's focus is to energize and inspire every student that walks into in the city's schools through an education rich in the arts. The organization leads a local effort of the Kennedy Center’s Any Given Child initiative, bringing together educators, artists, parents, and other community leaders to develop a district-wide arts education plan ensuring that Trenton students have an opportunity to engage in high-quality arts experiences and be taught by teachers who utilize arts-integration techniques that spark student creativity, problem-solving, and teamwork. This work is incredibly important when you consider that the arts are often the first on the chopping block when school budgets get tight and that some students never have the option to engage in arts experiences. Your support with help this organization create hope and the opportunity for a better world.

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  • Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania

    Young Audiences believes that every child deserves an education rich in arts learning that nurtures creativity, promotes cultural awareness, and helps children develop critical thinking and 21st century learning skills. Each year Young Audiences’ professional teaching artists advance the education of more than 400,000 students in pre-k to 12th grade with workshops, residencies, assembly programs, field trips, family arts festivals and teacher professional development. Young Audiences serves over 700 schools across the state offering programs in every artform — visual, dance, music, theatre, digital media and language arts. Your donation will help Young Audiences reach more classrooms and children and enrich the cultural life of New Jersey’s communities.

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    New Jersey a better place.

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