Conaway & Singleton Announce Grants to Help Homeless Youth & Boost Highway Safety in Burlington County

Assemblymen Herb Conaway, Jr., M.D. and Troy Singleton (both D-Burlington) on Thursday announced two major grants for Burlington County that will be used to assist homeless and abused youth and bolster efforts to improve highway safety.

The first grant comes from the state Department of Children and Families and has been awarded to Crossroads Inc. in Willingboro, which was founded in 1978 to provide shelter to runaway and homeless youth. The $25,000 grant is designed to improve facilities that serve children and families including domestic violence women’s shelters, out-of-home placements programs, homeless shelters, and community-based programming.

“Crossroads has been done an outstanding job serving homeless and abused children throughout New Jersey for over three decades,” said Conaway. “As their scope and mission expanded, so has their need for resources. This grant will help them continue improving upon the work they do.”

“Crossroads has done miraculous things for the youth in our area and throughout the state,” said Singleton. “This grant is well deserved and will hopefully go a long way towards furthering their mission to improve the lives of at-risk children, many of whom have nowhere else to turn.”

Since its inception, Crossroads has developed considerable expertise in serving youth who must transition to independent young adulthood without the support and guidance typically provided by family. Crossroads’ care has expanded to include shelter, outreach services, group homes, residential treatment, community-based treatment homes, life skills training, clinical services, mentoring programs and family therapy, all of which have improved outcomes and enhanced futures for the thousands of children and families.

Crossroads has seven locations in Burlington County, but serves youth throughout the state, with approximately 350 youth served annually in both residential and community-based programs.

The second grant, awarded to Mount Laurel, comes from the state Department of Transportation’s Safe Corridor Program, which dates to 2003 and targets resources to over a dozen highway segments that have a history of high crash rates. Funding awards are based on the frequency and severity of crashes, including injury and property damage.

The $36,890.65 grant will be used to improve safety along a portion of Route 73 in Mount Laurel.

“As the most densely populated state in the nation, we’re subject to more than our fair share of traffic headaches,” said Singleton. “But no one’s safety should ever be compromised by someone else who’s in a hurry to get somewhere. This grant will help local authorities promote safety and tame one of our more dangerous roadways.”

“The Safe Corridor program is designed to minimize driving risks in high-risk areas,” said Conaway. “This grant will equip law enforcement with the tools they need to minimize accidents and hopefully avoid senseless tragedies.”

A total of 53 municipalities will share $2 million in FY 12 Safe Corridors grants, which are supported by fines that are doubled in designated Safe Corridors for a variety of moving violations, including speeding. Municipalities can use the grants to purchase enforcement equipment, including police vehicles, radar equipment, computer hardware and software and salaries.