New Grants/Financial Assistance

  • 2021 Fall Congregational Development Grants. Learn how to apply for a one-year congregational development grant, which needs to reflect innovative ministry and align with A Journey of Hope here.
  • $500 grants available for rural churches. Deadline to apply is Oct. 15. More details about these 10 “Emerging /Impactful Ministry Awards” can be found here.
  • [This has closed]United Methodist Dollars for Scholars awards are still available from UMHEF! Read about what’s available and apply today, while funds still remain. Learn more and apply
  • Financial Help for Child Care: Check out these resources, including those impacting healthcare. Additional information can be found this webpage.
  • Updated 8.17.21: Based on new eligibility rules for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program, there may be an opportunity for clergy members and other employees of not-for-profit organizations engaged in faith-based work to have certain student loans forgiven. Applicants are now allowed to count hours spent on “religious instruction, worship, and any form of proselytizing” toward the full-time work requirement. For details.

Assistance for Your Needs

The New Jersey VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) has a number of programs that can be accessed to assist persons who can use help getting through the difficult financial strain of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Future With Hope actively participates in multiple weekly calls of NJVOAD and monitors VOADs in New York and Pennsylvania. Please see links below as well as updates as they arise:

  • Food Distribution: Economic hardships and food insecurity still exist for many throughout GNJ despite our emergence from lockdown and the uptick in vaccinations. For families with children in need of summer meals, they can go to, put in their address and find out where they pick up meals. They can also text FOOD to 877-877 for the same information. The Covid-19 waiver has been extended through the summer, so there is no income eligibility requirements.
  • For churches that are interested in being meal sites where families can pick up food for school aged children, there are some gaps for July and several gaps for the month of August. If a church is interested, they can reach out to HungerFreeNJ.

Child Care Payments Based on Enrollment

The Division of Family Development is extending the COVID-19 child care subsidy enrollment-based payment through December 31, 2021. This means tracking child care attendance via swipe cards or phone calls will continue to be on hold and child care providers will continue to be paid based on the number of enrolled children who receive state assistance in their program, rather than attendance. Parents do not need to check their child in and out of care.

(4.26.21): The Small Business Administration launched a new round of Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) assistance called Supplemental Targeted Advances, which is designed to provide $5 billion in additional assistance to small businesses and nonprofit organizations that have been most severely affected by the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Criteria include:

  • Is located in a low-income community. Use this mapping tool to see if your business is in a low-income community as defined in section 45D(e) of the Internal Revenue Code. The business address must be in a low-income community to qualify, so SBA encourages you to check the map before you apply; and
  • Can prove more than a 50% economic loss during an eight-week period beginning on March 2, 2020, or later, compared to the same period of the previous year. Applicants need to provide gross monthly revenue (all forms of combined monthly earnings received, such as profits or salaries) from January 2019 to the current month-to-date; and
  • Has 10 or fewer employees. This includes sole proprietors, independent contractors, private nonprofit organizations, and others that usually qualify for the EIDL program. However, agricultural businesses, such as farmers and ranchers, are not eligible for the Supplemental Targeted Advance. Farmers and ranchers may still apply for loan assistance through the COVID-19 EIDL program.

For more details, visit here.

(3.25.21): NJ DCA rental assistance program – either the landlord or the tenant can apply for rental assistance as part of the NJ Department of Community Affairs’ Homelessness Prevention program. For more details and to share the application, visit here.

(3.24.21): Internet & Funeral Benefits. The Federal Communications Commission is providing assistance to those households struggling to pay for internet. This new benefit will connect eligible households to jobs, critical healthcare services and virtual classrooms. Also available from FEMA is funeral expense reimbursement. Check out all details here.

(3.22.21): The NJ Department of Community Affairs opened its COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program – Phase II (CVERAP-2) for applications on March 22. Tenants in need of assistance with rental arrears or future rent who have experienced an economic impact due to the pandemic may apply. Landlords may apply on behalf of their tenants with the tenant’s permission. Information on the program and the online application portal can be found here and here, respectively.

(3.22.21): Community Food Bank of New Jersey is urgently seeking volunteers at its Hillside and Egg Harbor Township warehouses. For details.

Hunger Free NJ, a program of Center for Food Action that provides emergency services to New Jersey’s poorest and most vulnerable residents, is asking food pantries to advertise the P-EBT (Pandemic electronic benefit transfer) for eligible students starting in March 2021. The organization has asked all partners to share the information via social media or other platforms as the state readies a plan to distribute the next round of aid to families in need. For details, including social media graphics in multiple languages, click here.

Dial 2.1.1

If you need assistance finding food, paying housing bills, or other essential services, use the search bar in the above link to find your local 211 or dial 211 to speak to someone who can help. Accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week in 180 languages.

Food, Cash, Health Insurance:

Red Cross Virtual Family Assistance Center

Emotional support and grief counseling, funeral services, legal resources, financial information and veterans assistance.

Church Reopening Information

The GNJ leadership continues to evaluate what reopening looks like for our buildings for worship and ministry. Governors’ orders from the three states are shown in the links below: