Every week, New Jerseyans gather at free farmers markets in Morristown and Dover. These markets from nourish.NJ offer accessible, nutritious food free of charge to anyone – no questions asked. With costs skyrocketing and many families still working to recover financially following the COVID-19 pandemic, food insecurity is rising, and the need for support is greater than ever. 

A long-time grantee of The Tepper Foundation, nourish.NJ works to ensure that local communities throughout New Jersey have access to the essentials: affordable food, safe housing and trauma-informed mental health care. 

“Overall, our housing services are by far our most utilized. But what’s interesting is that our food programs are often the gateway for people into our organization’s offerings,” said Terry Connolly, CEO of nourish.NJ. “When community members engage in our food services first, they almost always end up engaging with our other programs as well.”

Food and housing insecurity often rise alongside one another, commonly followed by a decline in overall mental health and well-being for families. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, nourish.NJ staff saw this domino effect firsthand and had to adjust its structure to meet the shifting demands of its communities. Today, hardships remain. 

“A common misconception that I hear is that because unemployment rates have gone down, fewer people require support,” noted Connolly. “We know this isn’t true. In the last year, we’ve seen the attendance at our farmers markets double, and last year alone, we provided 150,000 free meals to New Jerseyans, significantly more than in previous years. With today’s housing prices, minimum wage salaries are insufficient for families to afford shelter and food, making these programs imperative for many.”

Recognizing this growing need, nourish.NJ works around the clock to fill these gaps with their services. Last November, they opened their new community hub in Dover. This new facility is equipped with a commercial-sized kitchen, allowing them to feed over 1,000 New Jerseyans every day utilizing their ‘Daily Meals’ program. 

This community hub allows local residents to access a variety of programs: 


  • Support accessing food stamps (SNAP) and WIC


  • Rapid rehousing – A time-sensitive method to exit homelessness and transition to permanent housing
  • Homelessness prevention
  • Diversion services – An appointed professional to help with alternative housing options before entering a shelter 
  • Emergency shelter and housing stability

Mental Health

  • Trauma-informed, culturally-contextualized services
  • Support accessing proper care and resources 

Financial Stability

  • Household budgeting
  • Help to navigate public benefits programs
  • Assistance securing and maintaining employment

Since 2016, The Tepper Foundation has provided $850,000 in grants to support nourish.NJ’s vital programs throughout New Jersey. We are excited to continue to support this organization and its ongoing commitment to bridging gaps in our state’s communities. 

To learn more about the important work that nourish.NJ is doing throughout New Jersey, visit their website here.