skip to main content

Featured Mini-Grantee | SALT Foundation

2024-06-20T19:49:31-04:00June 4th, 2024|

Combatting Food Insecurity in Jersey City

The SALT Foundation is a warrior in the fight against hunger and poverty in Jersey City and in several northeastern New Jersey counties. The name “SALT” references the use of salt to preserve food, and the phrase “salt of the earth” describes those who work to serve humanity.

The SALT Foundation distributes food to help residents achieve food security, improve nutrition, and promote well-being, partnering with supermarkets, farms, and others to provide healthy food and foster healthy lifestyles in all Jersey City neighborhoods.


HealthierJC + SALT Foundation

For the SALT Foundation building a Culture of Health means addressing basic human needs for those who are often underserved and facing many health challenges – food, shelter and clothing. By providing not just free food, but healthy and balanced meals, the SALT Foundation provides both sustenance and nutrition.  This is a foundational building block to improve the health and wellbeing of Jersey City residents, families, and communities.

In awarding the mini-grant, HealthierJC recognized the alignment of the SALT Foundation mission and goals with HealthierJC initiatives. The HealthierJC + SALT Foundation is a complimentary partnership working to advance a Culture of Health for all Jersey City.

How was the Mini-Grant Used?

Thanks to the HealthierJC mini-grant and other partnerships, the SALT Foundation hosted the following events during the grant period:

  • 7/02/23 – Holland Gardens food giveaway
  • 7/09/23 – Holland Gardens food giveaway
  • 7/16/23 – Holland Gardens food giveaway 
  • 8/06/23 – Ocean Ave. food giveaway
  • 8/28/23 – Partnership with Freetown Road Project Eatery
  • 9/10/23 – Partnership with The Flow Initiative and Mercy House

Through these events, the SALT Foundation distributed nearly 10,000 free healthy meals consisting of fresh produce, proteins, dairy, and grains to an estimated 1,400 Jersey City families, and 6,560 individual low-income residents, including unhoused people and recovering substance abusers from Wards A and F.

In addition to food distribution, the SALT Foundation collaborated with several local organizations to provide broader community health outreach.

  • Worked with The Freetown Road Project restaurant to present healthy West Indian cuisine. and introduce native island seasoning, fruits and vegetables
  • Joined forces with The Flow Initiative to counter the UNESCO statistic citing 1 in 10 menstruating girls miss school during their menstrual cycle due to limited access to menstrual products. This alliance resulted in the distribution of over 10,000 free sanitary products to female teens and other women challenged by period poverty.  

And the following grassroots community groups were asked to speak at several summer ’23 events:

  • Mysterious Ways, a nonprofit organization that supports innovative urban social development initiatives
  • Lisa’s Networking Group, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping underprivileged individuals acquire gainful employment and foster personal responsibility.

Making a Difference…

The SALT Foundation venues in 2023 provided organic opportunities for attendees, volunteers, and local organizations to socialize in a positive and uplifting way.  The following incidents illustrate the impact of SALT Foundation activities and the value of positive social interaction.

      • One volunteer noted that volunteers “had the chance to focus more on the people,” and this connection resulted in half a dozen residents spontaneously offering to help volunteers after the event, break down boxes and pack up event equipment and reusable supplies.
      • A second notable story occurred during a Holland Gardens food giveaway. One elderly woman mentioned how much she missed the SALT Foundation that had vacated a Newark Avenue location close to her home. When volunteers informed her that food distribution would soon resume in her neighborhood, she literally cried with joy and embraced them in an expression of sincere gratitude.

Moving forward the SALT Foundation will continue to promote nutrition, and in collaboration with partners like HealthierJC, it will expand its distribution of healthy foods to alleviate food insecurity.

“We would like to thank the Partnership for HealthierJC for this mini-grant that allowed us to further our work to build new relationships and strengthen current ones. The Partnership is creating very real change in the way Jersey City residents seek better health outcomes and the way that various groups can support each other, making every group and individual stronger and healthier! We look forward to building a HealthierJC with you and many others. Thanks so much!”
Claudia Wheeler, Founder & Executive Director, the SALT Foundation

For more information, visit