WAYVE Teen Foundation Board Chairs Rachel Simpson and Sean Hazard are proud to announce $6,500 in grant awards to seven Union County organizations. After being delayed from in-person meetings due to the pandemic in May, the WAYVE Teen Foundation Board convened via Zoom this fall where they reviewed nearly $20,000 in grants from 14 Union County agencies.

Grants were awarded to Caring Contact, Community Coordinated Childcare, Elizabethport Presbyterian Center, Gateway Family YMCA, Institute of Music for Children, Mobile Meals of Westfield and The Neighborhood House Association. 

The Westfield Area Youth Volunteer Experience (WAYVE) is made possible through a generous grant from the Westfield Foundation and is coordinated by Jewish Family Service of Central NJ (JFSCNJ), a nonprofit, non-sectarian health and social service agency, that serves all residents of Union County, NJ.

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Members of the 2020 WAYVE Teen Foundation Board included: Emma Aronowitz, Chloe Beaulieu, John Claiborne, Max Feldman, Sean Hazard, Dan Hazard, Samantha Katz, Drew Kornfeld, Jeremy Kornfeld, Emily Korth, Grace Lanza, Jack Rothfleisch, Madeline Silva, Rachel Simpson, Samantha Smith and Julia Weinstein.

WAYVE Teen Foundation Board Co-Chair Rachel Simpson said, “Being involved with the WAYVE Teen Board for the last three years has taught me so much about nonprofits in the area, and the grants review process.  Working with my peers and making a difference in my community is an experience that I will be proud of forever.” Co-Chair Sean Hazard added, ““It was an amazing experience that taught me valuable lessons and skills pertaining to a board like this while also allowing us to help people in need around Union County”

All members of the WAYVE Teen Foundation Board have expressed an interest in community service and have all volunteered for a wide range of Union County-based charities, social service organizations, synagogues and churches.

Tom Beck, Executive Director of Jewish Family Service of Central New Jersey, proudly stated, “I am very impressed with the hard work of this board and the choices made by the teens. Our community will be lifted up as a result.”

WAYVE Program Director Jill Dispenza expressed her admiration and appreciation to the teen board for a job well done and thanked The Y’s Men’s Club for their generous donation.

The grants were for a one-time, short-term projects that will improve the lives of Union County residents as it relates to Covid-19. The focus areas were: technology/equipment, and social service and advocacy for impoverished and/or vulnerable populations. Applicant agencies were all non-profit organization with proof of 501 © 3 tax-exempt status, have strong board involvement and demonstrate responsible financial stewardship.