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For Release:
October 05, 2011

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.

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Eight Community Organizations Awarded $800,000 to Help Residents Learn to Manage Pediatric Asthma, Diabetes


Health and Senior Services Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd today announced that eight community agencies each received $100,000 in state Community Health Mobilization grants to reduce asthma or diabetes in low-income areas throughout the state.


 “This funding will help these grassroots organizations work with people in their communities to increase awareness of these chronic diseases and help those with diabetes or asthma to better manage their illness and improve their quality of life,” Commissioner O’Dowd said.


Asthma is a leading chronic illness among children and youth and a leading cause of school absenteeism. Nationally, 5.6 million school-aged children and youth have asthma and in New Jersey, approximately 188,000 children have asthma. Studies have shown that better management of pediatric asthma translates into better attendance at school and fewer hospitalizations.


Staying active and making good nutritional choices can greatly reduce the risk of diabetes, which affects an estimated 473,000 New Jersey adults. An additional 190,000 people have diabetes, but have not yet been diagnosed with the chronic disease.


Asthma - Community Health Mobilization Grant:

Funds provided through this grant will be used to reduce pediatric asthma emergency department visits and related school absences by reducing exposure to asthma triggers and by improving self-management of asthma symptoms. The following organizations will each receive $100,000:


  • Henry J. Austin Health Center, Trenton, Mercer County
  • Hispanic Family Center of Southern New Jersey, Camden, Camden County


Grantees will collaborate with statewide and local partners to develop an asthma evaluation plan, and conduct community outreach and education.  The grantees will also provide case management services for children who miss school and visit emergency rooms due to asthma. 


Diabetes –Community Health Mobilization Grant:  

Funds provided through this grant will be used to increase community awareness of diabetes, increase screening and identification of individuals living with the disease, and improve access to care to treat diabetes. The following organization will each receive $100,000:


  • Nanticoke Lenni Lenape Indians, Bridgeton, Cumberland County
  • Servicios Latinos De Burlington County Inc., Mount Holly, Burlington County
  • Friends of Grace, Englewood, Bergen County
  • Center for Human Services, Bridgeton, Cumberland County
  • Puerto Rican Family Institute, Jersey City, Hudson County
  • Puerto Rican Association for Human Development, Perth Amboy, Middlesex County


Grantees will administer the American Diabetes Association Risk Test to 1,000 individuals and refer those who are high risk or diagnosed with diabetes but not under doctor's care to a physician.  Grantees will also provide educational and support services, link and track outcomes through prearranged relationships with primary care providers and conduct impact evaluations of the program.


“Diabetes is known as the ‘silent killer’ because so many people with the illness are unaware they are affected.  Increased testing will help identify people who otherwise would not have received needed treated until a health emergency occurs,” noted the Commissioner.



About Community Health Mobilization Grants:  Community Health Mobilization Grants are provided through the DHSS Office of Minority and Multicultural Health with the goal of reducing health disparities in asthma and diabetes in low income communities throughout New Jersey. The grants are awarded to minority serving community-based (CBO) or faith-based (FBO) organizations. These CBOs and FBOs work from within the community to raise awareness of the disparities, provide education on prevention and treatment strategies, and improve self-management techniques and the quality of care which community members receive.


For more information about the DHSS Office of Minority and Multicultural Health at


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