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Division and partner sites

Site Teams & Community Partners

The following Divisions consist of over 15 site-based teams made up of Bonner Community Scholars that work with community partners throughout Mercer, Burlington and Hunterdon Counties. Division staff coordinators collaborate with the Bonner Scholars to develop and execute site plans that address their needs and interests of the community with which they work. In addition to the Bonner Community Partner Network the Institute works with approximately 10 additional agencies on a regular basis on class-based projects or stand alone Community Engaged Learning Days.

Education Division

Academic Sports Academy 

The Greg Grant 94ft Academic Sports Academy is a nonprofit after school program designed to foster learning through rigorous academic tutoring as well as through basketball training that stresses high expectations for students. Bonner Scholars help run the after-school program, whether through teaching classes, helping students complete their homework, organizing community service projects, or creating art programs and more.

Trenton Central High School

Bonner Scholars that work with Trenton Central High School team and engage in tutoring and mentoring activities, as well as a new project focused on providing comprehensive information about the programs and services available throughout the School District. In addition, they mobilize other volunteers and TCNJ professors to help TCHS students succeed in their academic and personal lives.

Youth Development Institute at Hedgepeth-Williams School

Bonner Scholars run the Youth Development Institute throughout the academic year in partnership with Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School. The program includes the participation of TCNJ students and professors. Bonner Scholars also develop life-skills and writing workshops that are taught through sports, such as Hoops Skills and Track Academics, or literature, such as the Sixth Grade Writing Project.

Environment and Public Health Division

Fernbrook Farms

The Bonner Institute collaborates with Fernbrook Farm Educational Center, a not-for-profit organization that provides youth in inner-city areas, such as Trenton, educational opportunities to learn about the importance of the environment, sustainability and health. Bonner Scholars work with Fernbrook to develop opportunities for youth in Trenton, as well as build up the capacity of the not-for-profit portion of the Farms.

Meals on Wheels Mercer County

Meals on Wheels of Mercer County is a private, non-profit organization committed to providing nutritious meals and related services which are designed to promote the independence, dignity, health and wellbeing of our homebound customers. We deliver meals to homebound individuals in the ​Mercer County area with the help of a large group of committed volunteers. Bonner Community Scholars deliver meals and support homebound individuals in Trenton and the region.

President’s Climate Commitment Committee 

Bonner Scholars work with the President’s Climate Commitment Committee (PC3), which is dedicated the development of a comprehensive plan to achieve climate neutrality for our campus. It gives tangible actions that we will initiate in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Students develop and execute campus-wide projects including recycling initiatives, Reduce for Good Use campaigns, and a tree mapping project.

Rescue Mission

The Rescue Mission of Trenton is the agency in the City of Trenton that serves the truly needy men and women who have no place to turn for shelter, food, and clothing. The Mission provides a safe, clean, warm, refuge for the homeless, the hungry, the transient and the addicted. Bonner Scholar Entrepreneurs are supporting the Rescue Mission by selling the Mission Store’s items to a niche market – the campus community – and donating the profits back to the Rescue Mission (The Thrift Project). Along with the Environment Team, Bonner Scholars work with TCNJ community on the clothing drives. Bonner Scholars are also assist with other projects at the Rescue Mission such as providing GED tutoring to patrons.

Sustainability Institute

The Bonner Environmental Team partners with Sustainability Institute, a “think and do” tank that manages a number of cutting edge research and outreach programs focused on sustainable development, including the award winning Sustainable Jersey Certification Program and numerous federal and state grant-funded projects. It’s mission is to advance sustainable development through research, outreach, and training. The goal of the Bonner Environment Team is to create a greener world in our towns and on our campus, and does so by working with four municipalities and their municipal Green Teams with their goals and objectives.

TCNJ Campus Garden 

Constructed by Bonners and volunteers in April 2010, the team maintains the TCNJ Campus Garden, including weeding, watering and planting fresh fruits and vegetables on a regular basis. This community garden provides food for the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen as well as a space to build community and educate urban youth. In 2013, the garden was relocated to its current site, on the south end of campus. With help from PC3 and Buildings and Grounds staff, an eight-foot fence was installed, the soil was tilled, and water access has been provided.

Juvenile Justice and Prisoner Reentry Division

Mercer County Correctional Center

Mercer County Correctional Center is a short-term jail facility that confines both men and women with Minimum, Medium, and Maximum-security classifications. At this facility, two professional staff facilitate Socrates Café group meetings, a philosophical thought provoking conversation on a weekly basis that provides inmates the opportunity for critical thinking and reflection. During the fall, First Year Seminar professors connect their students to this group for their Community Engaged Learning Day.

PEI Kids 

PEI Kids is Mercer County’s premier organization focused on issues related to violence and children, whether it is the egregious insult of violence on children or children so incredibly overwhelmed with social, familial and peer pressures that they themselves turn to violent and unlawful behavior. PEI Kids provides primary prevention, education and intervention programs to help keep the children in our community safe. Bonner Scholars work alongside staff and help deliver a life-skills curriculum to juvenile offenders.  They also develop and organize additional enrichment and educational projects.

Rescue Mission

The Rescue Mission of Trenton is the agency in the City of Trenton that serves the truly needy men and women who have no place to turn for shelter, food, and clothing. The Mission provides a safe, clean, warm, refuge for the homeless, the hungry, the transient and the addicted. Bonner Scholar Entrepreneurs are supporting the Rescue Mission by selling the Mission Store’s items to a niche market – the campus community – and donating the profits back to the Rescue Mission (The Thrift Project). Along with the Environment Team, Bonner Scholars work with TCNJ community on the clothing drives. Bonner Scholars are also assist with other projects at the Rescue Mission such as providing GED tutoring to patrons.

Trenton Violence Reduction Strategy

The Trenton Violence Reduction Strategy (TVRS) is a collaborative project between The College of New Jersey (Center for Community Engaged Learning & Research), The Trenton Police Department, and local social service providers –  including UIH Family Partners and Family Guidance amongst others. Funded by the Office of the Attorney General, the goal of TVRS are to change the criminogenic behavior of a targeted population identified by the Trenton Police Department.  Bonner Community Scholars support the efforts of TVRS outreach workers.

Self Sufficiency Division

Arc Mercer

The Arc Mercer is a grassroots, family focused organization dedicated to creating opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) to achieve their goals. We believe everyone is a valued, contributing member of our community at large. Our focus is to provide those we serve with the resources, support, and services needed to reach their highest level of independence regardless of diagnosis, and at all stages of life. Bonner Scholars design and support programming for the Arc Mercer community.

El Centro de Recursos Para Familias 

El Centro de Recursos Para Familias is a multi-service, family-focused community resource center and community building program serving Mercer County with special emphasis on meeting the needs of the Latino community in Trenton. Bonner Scholars work with El Centro to teach three levels of basic language/pre-ESL classes twice a week to families in an effort for them to achieve self-sufficiency and confidence in their language skills.

Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity of Trenton is dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally and worldwide through constructing, rehabilitating and preserving homes; by advocating for fair and just housing policies; and by providing training and access to resources to help families improve their shelter conditions. Besides providing assistance towards the building of homes in the area, Bonner Scholars are also working on marketing and outreach projects for Habitat for Humanity. Bonners assist in the Learning Lab hosted at the organization and provide mentoring to their participants. They recruit other TCNJ student to volunteer at the agency and lead resource development activities.

Trenton Area Soup Kitchen

The Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK) is a private, non-sectarian, charitable organization that depends almost entirely on the help of dedicated volunteers and generous financial support from individuals, churches, local businesses and community organizations. TASK provides more than 3,000 free meals per week to people in need in the Trenton area, and provides a variety of social services to help individuals become self-sufficient. Bonner Scholars regularly serve on the food line, as well as tutor GED students. They are also help register patrons into the food stamp program, staff the pantry, and organize various drives as well as enrichment programs.

The Wall 

The Wall is a newspaper that is produced for and with the homeless. This is a major collaborative effort that involves journalism professors, journalism students, volunteers and a few community partners (including the Mercer Alliance, TASK, and the Rescue Mission). Bonner Scholars fill the top management positions and Alliance staff members are the publishers, helping with the weekly supervisory tasks as well.

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