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The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey, the philanthropic arm of the state’s largest health insurance provider, on Tuesday launched a request for proposals from nonprofit arts and community groups that seek funding for projects that use the arts to encourage better health. 

Recognizing the powerful role that the arts play in promoting healthy behaviors, the Horizon Foundation is offering one-year grants of up to $25,000 for proposals that advance one or more of these areas of focus: 

  • Directly encourage healthy behaviors — physical and/or mental 
  • Promote greater dialogue on health —specifically the priority areas of obesity, behavioral health, or social determinants of health 
  • Educate, connect to, or raise awareness of available health services 
  • Makes health information more clear, memorable, and relevant to the community 

Examples of the types of projects that could be eligible for funding include a community theater program that powerfully conveys the risks of opioid-use disorder or an arts-making partnership with a community health office to raise awareness of programming on diabetes and nutrition, according to the announcement on the foundation’s website. 

“The arts can also be an effective tool for conveying health messaging and encouraging healthy behaviors within a community,” the foundation’s announcement said. “With this new approach, we seek to support exciting new and innovative programs, as well as to better align the foundation’s arts giving with the core mission of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey: Empowering our members to achieve their best health.” 

The RFP and link to the application can be found here.  

The application deadline is Sept. 13, and the grant decisions will be announced on Nov. 19. Approved grant programs start on Jan. 1, 2025.