Making Dreams Come True During COVID-19: The Field of Dreams Project
Throughout the trying period of COVID-19, the Ocean County Health Department (OCHD) is staying positive. As we continue to empower individuals to take responsibility for their health and wellness and that of their communities, we have stayed in contact with our community partners to keep working towards our goals. Just this past week, we were fortunate enough to speak with one partner in particular detailing progress on a project we are extremely excited to be a part of: The Toms River Field of Dreams (TRFOD).
Phase one of this project is complete, marking significant progress on this complex as the trees and grading are complete, and the next phase of installing power and gas to the site will begin. The completion of this second phase will then lead to the third phase: construction of the complex! With this project inspiring many of those in our community, the construction will continue throughout these troublesome times and the Toms River Field of Dreams should be open for individuals of all ages, abilities, and needs to enjoy by late 2020 or early 2021.
With its central location and ability to reach individuals of all needs, TRFOD is the perfect place for OCHD to focus the work of this grant. In conjunction with our partners, we aim to: 1) create an inclusive, sustainable built environment fostering active living, 2) provide tangible opportunities for individuals with disabilities to receive social support and health education, and 3) deliver healthy eating education with diabetes and cardiovascular screening services to the community at least once each month.
Community gardens built as part of this grant initiative will be tended for by community volunteers to optimize every opportunity to educate Ocean County residents on active living and healthy eating habits catered to the contents of the community garden. This garden will also give local high school students and seniors the chance to be involved, socialize, and invest in the residents of Ocean County that are disabled as they assist with the maintenance of the garden and earn community service hours, along with the feeling of fulfillment that they are actively helping their community.
OCHD is wholeheartedly looking forward to partnering with TRFOD to provide a place of healthy activities, socializing, and fun educational opportunities for individuals of all ages, abilities, and needs!
About the Grantee
In partnership with our community, we are committed to serving as a leader to promote healthy lifestyles, ensure a clean and safe environment, and provide high-quality public health services to protect our present and future generations.