Agency: Youth Consultation Services
Project: LifeChoices Project
Goal: Is a statewide, intellectual/developmental disabilities prevention and risk reduction project primarily focusing on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.
Target Demographic: Sexually Active Teens; Pregnant Women; and First-time Mothers
Agency: Spina Bifida Resource Network
Project: Fortify Your Future II
Goal: A statewide program focusing on dietary habits (promote healthy and folate-rich foods) in order to improve health and to reduce chances of having children with disabilities. Additionally, will educate young women on the dangers of binge drinking and its relation to unintended pregnancies and risk for developmental difficulties.
Target Demographic: College students and young women of childbearing age, especially in Hispanic communities.
Agency: Isles Inc.
Project: Prevention of Developmental Disabilities (Lead)
Goal: This lead poisoning prevention project targets the prevention of lead exposure to newborns and young children through training, testing, remediation, and public education.
Target Demographic: Lower income families, living in Trenton.
Agency: Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN)
Project: Online Training for Health Providers on Screening Women for Alcohol Use/Abuse and Peer-to-Peer Supports for Diverse Women of Childbearing Age
Goal: Increase knowledge and capacity of at least 100 health care providers, including primary care providers, home visitors, etc. on FASD, the importance of and how to use effective screening tools, and available community resources and supports. Improve access to culturally, linguistically, and socio-economically relevant peer-to-peer support for women at risk of alcohol use/abuse and of having a child with FASD.
Target Demographic: Women of child-bearing age, especially women who are pregnant, who are at risk of drinking alcohol during their pregnancy.
Agency: Rutgers – RWJ Medical School
Project: Research study regarding where folate/folic acid metabolism
Goal: The hypothesis of this project is that folic acid supplementation prior to and during pregnancy changes the risk of autism and this risk is modified by functional variants in dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) including the DHFR 19bp intron 1 deletion and this risk may further be modified by variants in other folate related alleles. The results of this study are thought to likely have implications on a number of developmental disorders; specifically, any developmental disorder where folate/folic acid metabolism has been implicated. This may include disorders/conditions such as pre-term delivery, low birth weight, pregnancy loss, neural tube defects, congenital heart defect, chromosome disorders as well as autism.
Target Demographic: Pregnant Women
Agency: Princeton University Department of Psychology & RWJ Medical School
Project: Research project to measure infant learning processes associated with typical vs. atypical cerebellar functioning.
Goal: This venture aims to establish extremely early life markers to identify infants at risk for developmental disabilities (DDs) that include language, learning, memory, cognitive, and motor delays and deficits associated with cerebral palsy, schizophrenia, and autism spectrum disorders. This project is intended to increase the accuracy with which young children are identified for screening, evaluation, and enrollment in early intervention services.
Target Demographic: Newborn children
Agency: New Jersey Institute for Disabilities
Goal: Enhance the knowledge base of residents in Middlesex County that are at particular risk for contracting the Zika virus. The agency intends utilize community training sessions, engagement with faith based organizations, utilization of social media as well as through the distribution of materials. “NOZika” information will be disseminated throughout the community. By bringing awareness of the dangers of the Zika virus and helping the community understand the ways that Zika is spread, this project could help impact the amount of children born with developmental disabilities.
Target Demographic: Middlesex County residents
Agency: Children’s Home Society of NJ
Project: CARES for Her
Goal: Teach pregnant women, and women in their reproductive years, behaviors that promote healthy fetal development, including avoiding alcohol and substance use, managing stress and anxiety, ensuring adequate intake of folic acid and vitamins, and knowing the signs of early labor and what to do. Project funding will support the “CARES for Her” preconception and prenatal health education program. CARES for Her is intended to CARES for Her will attempt to accomplish its goals by delivering group education for women in central New Jersey (Mercer, Ocean and Monmouth Counties).
Target Demographic: Pregnant women, and women in their reproductive years.