Monmouth County creates faith-based initiative to assist residents in need

In a move it said will provide services and assistance to residents without impacting county finances, the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders has created the Monmouth County Faith-Based Initiative.

The county’s governing body took the action on May 24.

In a resolution, the freeholders said the United States “since its inception, has relied heavily on the resources and expertise of faith-based and charitable service organizations to help care for those among us who are most vulnerable and in need.”

The resolution states that “the ability of faith-based organizations to secure funding and goods with little or no administrative costs translates into a much more efficient and far-reaching service directly administered to the groups or individuals most in need.”

The freeholders said “the long-term success of these programs and the current financial crisis facing government at all levels is evidence that government must look to shift the burden back to those entities most able to provide these services efficiently and with minimal impact on public finances.”

Having said that, the freeholders created the Monmouth County Faith-Based Initiative “to provide services and assistance to residents without impacting county finances by:

• “Identifying faith-based or other non-governmental organizations capable of collaborating with the county;

• “Identifying the specific needs of qualifying county residents who need assistance;

• “Inventorying the resources and services available in the 53 municipalities to help better organize assistance efforts;

• “Review available county resources and services to identify where collaboration can be leveraged to reach more people in need;

• “Develop a system or clearinghouse to connect residents in need with faith-based institutions or other organizations that can be of assistance;

• “Develop an application, “app,” for residents to access information and available resources;

• “Identify programs for philanthropic support.”

The freeholders will notify the clerk in each of the county’s 53 municipalities of the new faith-based initiative.