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Rutgers Equity Alliance for Community Health
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Rutgers Equity Alliance for Community Health
  • Grants

Grants

Community-Academic Grants Program

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The Rutgers Equity Alliance for Community Health (REACH) is designed to improve health outcomes in economically disadvantaged communities by addressing social determinants of health. REACH's work focuses on five social determinants of health: education, employment, food access and food security, housing and population health in three New Jersey cities: Camden, New Brunswick and Newark. REACH is a university-wide effort designed to bring all four chancellor-led units together to address health and socioeconomic inequities through academic-community partnerships.

The purpose of REACH’s grant funding is to put research into practice by working in partnership with community residents and leaders on new approaches to bring about long-lasting systemic change and achieve health equity by addressing issues of inequity that include structural and systemic racism impacting all five of our social determinant focus areas. REACH is designed to support Rutgers faculty, students and staff to engage in equitable, longitudinal and sustainable community-based scholarship

The REACH Community-Academic Grants Program comprises two funding categories:  

Community Impact Grants 

Community Impact Grants will fund projects focused on positively impacting the community in a demonstrable way through an evidence-based strategy for change. These projects are not required to have a research focus or lead to subsequent research funding.

The impetus for this funding category is two-fold:

1) to incentivize translation of research and/or replication of community-identified successful operations into practice and

2) to serve as a mechanism to provide bridge funding for continuity of community engagement projects that positively impact socioeconomic and health outcomes. For example, these grants may support ongoing community-based work that emerged in an effective research project developed in partnership with community that is unable to be sustained when current grant funding ends. These funds may also be used to pilot the integration of learners into community-engaged service and/or scholarship with an expectation that such engagement can be maintained once the grant funding ends. It should be noted that all Community Impact Grants must include an evaluation component and plans for sustainability should be outlined.

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Research Seed Grants

Research Seed Grants will fund projects that have the potential to advance knowledge and identify new evidence-based strategies for improvement in one of the five social determinants. These projects are required to have a clear research focus that will lead to ongoing research funding.

The impetus for this funding category is two-fold:

1) to incentivize faculty to further develop community partnerships to inform their research direction and

2) to provide funding for the collection of preliminary data and results that will make future grant applications to other funders more successful. Where appropriate, these grants can be used to fund community-based participatory research projects that focus on one of the five identified social determinants in one of the three key cities. REACH funding is not intended primarily for research purposes. Research Seed Grants are therefore intended to seed community-based research projects designed to answer questions focused on one or more of our five social determinants of health to inform action to achieve long-lasting systemic change.

In both funding categories, grants will only be awarded for projects that align community members, organizations, and Rutgers faculty or staff in a long-term collaborative alliance. It is anticipated that approximately 80% of REACH funding will be awarded as Community Impact Grants, and 20% will fund Research Seed Grants. Applicants will be required to specify the type of funding for which they are applying.

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Future Grant Funding Cycles

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FAQ

  • All applications must be submitted online.

     

    The following elements will comprise a complete packet and are available on the InfoReady application site: 

    • Applicant Information 

    • Proposal type: Community Impact Grant vs. Research Seed Grant 

    • Proposal abstract: Brief description of the overall project, not to exceed 500 words. 

    • Proposal narrative: Not to exceed five pages, including any figures or tables. No appendix materials will be accepted. 

    • Proposed budget: Anticipated budget for the project, including funding to be allocated to community partner(s).  

    • Letter(s) of commitment from community partner(s): Required of all proposed community partners, describing their role in and commitment to the project. 

    • Principal Investigator’s CV and CVs or resumés from identified project staff and community partners. 

    • A clearly documented evaluation strategy with a determination of whether IRB approval will be required. 

  • REACH funding is not intended primarily for research purposes. 

  • Anticipated future funding cycles 

    March 15, 2024 – Round Three: Total of $1.5 million to be awarded by June 15, 2024 

    September 15, 2024 – Round Four: Total of $750,000 to be awarded by December 15, 2024 

    • Project directors/principal investigators (PD/PI) must be full-time Rutgers employees. 

    • Any Rutgers faculty/staff member is eligible to apply, provided they are engaged in an active, mutually generative partnership with a community-based organization working in one of REACH’s three targeted cities. 

    • Proposals from full-time Rutgers staff must represent projects directly related to their roles and work within the University. 

    • All proposed projects must be a partnership between the indicated Rutgers PD/PI and at least one community-based organization. 

    • As part of the proposal submission, community partner representatives must endorse the proposal and attest to their role in the formation and implementation of the project, and outline the anticipated outcomes and impact on local systems. 

    • Community-based organizations must be tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and not private foundations or nonfunctionally integrated Type III supporting organizations. 

    • Examples of partner organizations include, but are not limited to: faith-based organizations, community-based organizations, local health and human service agencies; K–12 schools, hospital systems, local government, government agencies or departments, nonprofits, or other eligible entities interested in making an impact in their communities around SDOH. While the grant recipient will be a Rutgers faculty/staff member, grant funding is intended to support the strategies and work of the proposed project, including the community partner(s). 

    • All applications must focus on projects based in Camden, New Brunswick or Newark.  While community partners may be based outside of these three cities, the work to be done must be focused on these three cities alone. 

    • All applications must be focused on one of the five focus areas of housing, employment, food access and security, population health, or education. 

  • The Rutgers Office for Research has several new tools and resources for determining if the proposed project is considered “Human Subject Research” and requires IRB approval, including: 

    • Non-Human Research Self-Certification Tool - a resource that provides support to Rutgers investigators when determining if a project is human research requiring IRB review. This tool asks a series of questions about the proposed project activities and, based on responses, issues a self-certification or directs faculty to contact the IRB for assistance. 
    • IRB Pre-Review Service Team - Comprised of highly knowledgeable IRB and HRPP staff, as well as key Committee Members on the IRB, the Pre-Review team provides subject matter expertise and feedback for all study documents prior to the researcher’s formal submission or resubmission for review by the IRB in eIRB. 
    • IRB Review Type and Template Recommendation Tool - asks a series of questions to provide investigators with recommendations on which protocol and consent templates to use based on the type of research indicated. 

    Should the proposed project require IRB approval, notice of approval will be required prior to the release of funding. It is not required at the time of application. 

    • Community based organizations/community partners cannot be a Rutgers entity and for purposes of this project, their work must be based in Camden, Newark, or New Brunswick. 
       
    • Community-based organizations must be tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and not private foundations.
       
    • Examples of partner organizations include, but are not limited to: faith-based organizations, community-based organizations, local health and human service agencies; K–12 schools, hospital systems, local government, government agencies or departments, nonprofits, or other eligible entities interested in making an impact in their communities around SDOH.
  • Yes, a minimum of 20% of the requested grant budget must be allocated to the identified community par

  • Yes. Personnel costs cannot exceed 20% of the requested budget.

  • Our third round is open March 6, 2024.

    We will have four rounds of funding in total. 

  • Yes, anyone identified in the proposal narrative must provide a CV or resume.

  • Yes, grantees are eligible to reapply for future funding but not guaranteed awards. 

  • That is not a priority. We are not looking for volume- we are looking for the right partners.

  • Eligible faculty and staff can only submit one proposal per person as the principal investigator. 

  • Proposals that demonstrate longitudinal engagement of learners in the funded work will be considered for an additional $25,000 in funding, beyond the $200,000 maximum award.