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John O. Wilson Hamilton Neighborhood Center

End Hunger and Homelessness in Mercer County N.J.

The Common Good Initiative

The Trenton Social Impact Group is comprised of CEOs and Executive Directors of nonprofit organizations working together to improve the lives of those living in the Trenton area. These organizations have created a safety net of services to help all people in Mercer County, New Jersey. The organization believes everyone deserves to live with dignity. Our “Common Good Initiative” helps individuals in need of food and shelter. Our participating members connect people to resources—but our most important work connects people with people.

Mission, Vision, Values

Our Mission

To strengthen individuals, support families and build thriving communities.

Our Vision

To connect, inform and build sustainable communities.

Our Values / Commitment

We are committed to meeting the needs of our clients and the community.

Resourceful

We seek and leverage opportunities to benefit our clients and the community.

Respect

We will show dignity and respect to all people, communities and cultures.

Service

We will provide valued resources to the community.

Our Programs and Services

Food Pantry/Fighting Food Insecurities: 

Supporting individuals and families struggling with the ever-increasing rise in food insecurity, the Center’s Food Pantry provides ongoing and lifesaving nourishment to residents within Hamilton Township and additional Mercer County communities. Stocked with canned fruits and vegetables, soup, pasta, rice, and other essential items, the Wilson Food Pantry is available to qualified recipients and open by appointment only, due to COVID-19 precautions, each Thursday between the hours of 9:30 am to 4 pm.  

 

In addition to the Center’s Food Pantry, our efforts in fighting food insecurities has now expanded to quarterly food drives which are available free of charge and without restriction for area residents. Depending on the time of year and selection/availability of items, various hunger-relief programs will feature boxes of fresh produce, Thanksgiving turkeys with all the trimmings, and other food options to help enhance nutritional health and overall wellness. 

Homeless Prevention Program: 

With the goal of keeping individuals and families from eviction and loss of heat, power or water, the Center’s Prevention Program provides back rent and utility assistance to local residents who meet program eligibility criteria. This critically needed emergency relief service offers a one-time supplemental payment toward rent, electricity, water or heat to help mitigate the devastating effects of homelessness and sudden loss of power.  

 Senior Activities: 

Recognizing the importance of maintaining social interaction and engagement with our senior population and keeping them updated on important resources to support their health and wellbeing, the Center organizes and hosts a variety of fun, interactive programs which include bus trips to places of interest, arts and crafts, bingo and other games which help reinforce cognitive abilities, and informative classes and workshops on pertinent topics of interest.  

 Lunch and Learns: 

 To help further support and educate area resident on important topics of interest, the Wilson Center provides free monthly lunches that come with a side dish of useful information and resources. Dubbed “Lunch and Learn,” these fun and interactive programs will offer helpful cooking demonstrations, lessons on better understanding today’s technology to stay connected with family and friends, discovering new hobbies and hidden talents, and other beneficial topics. 

 Youth Summer Camp: 

Providing a valuable service to financially challenged working families in the community, the Center proudly sponsors an annual Summer Camp Program in partnership with the Hamilton Area YMCA Sawmill Branch. The four-week program includes camp tuition, transportation, lunch, and the opportunity for area children to build new friendships, important skills, and the experience of a lifetime! 

 Wellness @Wilson Series:  

 With a focus on educating the general community, the Center has recently launched a series of free, in-person classes and virtual presentations to help residents better understand and improve their physical, mental, emotional, financial, and spiritual health and wellbeing. Presentations cover various wellness topics including how to better manage stress and anxiety, the benefits of yoga and tai chi, heart disease and diabetes education, CPR training, self-defense lessons, household budgeting, and more. Virtual presentations will be recorded and archived on the Center’s website for continuous, on-demand viewing. 

 Computer Lab: 

Established to increase community access and availability to essential technology and services, the Center’s free Computer Lab features eight, upgraded desktop computers equipped with the internet access, the full suite of Microsoft Office programs, and large-screen monitors. The Lab, which is open daily between the hours of 10 am to 3 pm (by appointment only due to COVID-19 precautions) also provides free printing, copying, and faxing services. Also, plans are underway to develop free, community-based computer literacy classes to support job training, new software advances, and lessoning the digital divide between generations.  

 

Community Services and Partnerships: 

As a way to support and give back to the community, especially to families in need, the Center plans and implements several vital collection and giveaway drives along with important events of recognition and educational awareness. These include the Center’s longstanding and highly successful Toy Drive/Christmas Gift Giveaway for the families of Wilson Elementary, ongoing Winter Coat/Hat/Gloves Drive, School Backpack Drive, and upcoming plans to expand outreach with Veterans’ programs/events and community-based health fairs.   

 

Serving as the neighborhood “hub” for many diverse families and civic groups, the Center is the host site for numerous community enrichment programs and activities including the federally funded Gateway Head Start Program, Mercer County Senior Nutrition Program, Golden Agers of Hamilton Township, Narcotics Anonymous, and Phi Delta Kappa, Inc. Additionally, local residents receive vital, free health services at the Center through the Hamilton Township and Mercer County Health Departments including COVID-19 vaccinations, annual flu shots, blood pressure checks, cholesterol screening, and other public health evaluations and programs. 

 

Contact, Volunteer, Donate    

For more information on our free programs and services, or to support our efforts through volunteer time, goods or money, please visit the John O. Wilson Hamilton Neighborhood Center, Inc. www.jowilsoncenter.org or contact us at (609) 393-6480 or info@jowilsoncenter.org. Thank you! 

All of the organizations in The Common Good Initiative are welcoming volunteers – some virtually, some in person. To find out the guidelines for volunteering at any of these organizations, just click on their logo below:

 

                          

                 

                            

        

Donate

Donate

  • Make a personal or corporate financial contribution to promote the work of the organizations and of the Common Good Initiative.
  • Organize a fundraiser to benefit the organization of your choice.
  • Provide donations “in-kind” – our agencies have wish lists of items that you, civic organizations or businesses could donate.
Volunteer

Volunteer

  • Give the gift of your time by spending time serving meals, packing food bags, tutoring homeless children… just a few examples of the good work you can do.
  • Volunteer your special skills to help increase awareness of hunger and homelessness…prepare a Common Good Initiative newsletter.
  • Help us with social media.
Take Action

Take Action

  • Let your friends and families know about the Common Good Initative.
  • Contact our local elected officials to tell them all of our community members should be fed and housed.
  • Participate in events hosted by an organization that resonates with you.
Like Us

Like Us

  • Visit our Facebook page and “LIKE” the Common Good Initiative.
  • Send your friends and colleagues a link to the website.
  • Share how much you “LIKE” helping to make a difference!

Services

The Common Good Initiative

To take full advantage of our support network, please search below for our services that can help you.

Feeding the Needs of our Community

More than 50,000 residents will go hungry tonight in Mercer County, N.J., a number that has swelled in the era of COVID-19, according to research by Feeding America. Including children and seniors, 11% of Mercer County is food insecure. Our county-wide support network opens its doors and delivers food throughout the week to help feed those in need.

Arm in Arm
Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton
Homefront
Jewish Family and Children Services
John O. Wilson Hamilton Neighborhood Center
Meals on Wheels of Mercer County
Mercer Street Friends
Mt. Carmel Guild
One Simple Wish
Rescue Mission of Trenton
Shine and Inspire
Trenton Area Soup Kitchen
Urban Promise

Breaking the Cycle of Homelessness

The majority (56%) of Mercer County homeless persons reported having some type of disability, according to a Point-in-Time Count of the homeless from Monarch Housing Associates. Survivors of Domestic Violence represent 11.2% of the total homeless population in our county, while 92.6% of our homeless youth identify as African American. Our county-wide support network provides emergency shelters, short-term apartments and long-term housing solutions.

Anchor House
Arm in Arm
Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton
Community Health Law Project
Homefront
Isles
Life Ties
Mt. Carmel Guild
Rescue Mission of Trenton
Shine and Inspire
Womanspace

Delivering Education/Employment Classes

The lack of education and employment is part of the reason why the wealthiest American families now have 75 times more wealth as lower-income families, according to a report from Pew Research Center. A minimum-wage worker would have to work nearly 127 hours per week to afford a two-bedroom rental home in most of the U.S., according to the National Low Income Housing Coalition. Our county-wide support network teaches the skills needed to overcome.

Arm in Arm
Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton
Child Care Connection
Dress for Success of Central New Jersey
Homefront
Isles
John O. Wilson Hamilton Neighborhood Center
LALDEF
Mercer Street Friends
Mill Hill
One Simple Wish
Rescue Mission of Trenton
Shine and Inspire
The Father Center of New Jersey
Trenton Area Soup Kitchen
Urban Promise

Counseling Those Who Need Help

Individuals with physical and mental challenges are overrepresented when it comes to food insecurity and homelessness. Among Mercer County’s homeless disabled, 53% reported mental health issues making it the most prevalent disability, according to the Mercer County Point-in-Time Count of the Homeless from Monarch Housing Associates. Our county-wide support network provides trained staff in the areas of trauma, cognitive behavioral therapy, mood disorders and anger management.

Anchor House
Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton
Homefront
Jewish Family and Children Services
Life Ties
Mercer Street Friends
Mill Hill
Rescue Mission of Trenton
Shine and Inspire
The Father Center of New Jersey
Womanspace

Building Through Empowerment

Lifting people up through the sharing of crucial knowledge will give all Mercer County residents a true support network. Our county-wide network provides men with mock on-site job interviews and teenage boys with classes about healthy and productive relationships, as well as leadership and life skills. We provide women with support groups for job search and a career center for assistance, ranging from job training to referrals to local boutiques.

Anchor House
Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton
Child Care Connection
Community Health Law Project
Dress for Success of Central New Jersey
Homefront
Isles
Jewish Family and Children Services
John O. Wilson Hamilton Neighborhood Center
Life Ties
Mercer Street Friends
Mill Hill
Mt. Carmel Guild
One Simple Wish
People and Stories / Gente Y Cuentos
Rescue Mission of Trenton
Shine and Inspire
The Father Center of New Jersey
Trenton Area Soup Kitchen
Urban Promise
Womanspace

News & Events

July 14, 2020

CMA Joins Fight Against Hunger, Homelessness

A subset of the Trenton Social Impact Group (TSIG), which is a consortium of 25 Mercer County-based nonprofits, will participate in the digital marketing campaign. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated a present and persistent problem where a growing number of neighbors exist without food and shelter.

April 29, 2021

In some cities, the pandemic’s economic pain may continue for a decade

As COVID-19 vaccines are distributed and infection rates trend downward, predictions for what post-pandemic America will look like have begun.

April 30, 2021

The Human Side of COVID-19’s Impact on Nonprofits

Nonprofit organizations are powered by the passion and dedication of their staff. But as the COVID-19 pandemic leads to funding interruptions, increased demand for services and safety concerns, many organizations are being forced to make tough staffing and compensation decisions.

May 25, 2021

CATHOLIC CHARITIES TO PROVIDE COVID-19 TESTS, VACCINES TO UNDERSERVED GROUPS

The New Jersey Department of Health has enlisted Catholic Charities, Diocese of Trenton to help provide critically needed COVID-19 health education, testing, contact tracing, and vaccine support to underserved groups in Central Jersey, including Latino and Black communities and documented and undocumented immigrants.

There’s Still Time! Join the LifeTies 40th Anniversary Wellness Challenge!

Date/Time: -

Location: Virtual Announcement of top team winners

More Info: March 29th - Three more days and LifeTies 40th Anniversary Wellness Challenge will begin!. Sign up here to register: https://p2p.onecause.com/lifeties From April 1st - April 29th, you will commit to 40 hours of wellness and self-care activities. You will be able to track all of your activities such as running, walking, dancing, meditating, yoga...join in the fun while contributing to both your wellness and to the wellness of our youth.

Join Womanspace April 28, 2021 for Denim Day

Date/Time: April 28, 2021 -

Location:

More Info: Wear Denim to support survivors and educate yourself and others about sexual assault #SAAM2021 #DenimDay2021

Isles’ 2021 Virtual Forum

Date/Time: June 7, 2021 -

Location: Virtual

More Info: You’re invited to Isles’ Forum, a FREE, week-long virtual series of webinars, workshops, panels and more to explore community development and environmental challenges and solutions. Pick and choose the topics of interest to you, or sign up for all! This Forum is free and open to the public as part of Isles’ 40 Years of Impact celebration. https://isles.org/forum

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