Hillsborough Township officials are encouraging local non-profit organizations to submit applications for a grant application awards program this spring season.
Municipal officials announced on Feb. 25 the township is accepting grant applications for the Hillsborough Rewards Credit Card Program in time for an April 10 deadline.
Officials said Hillsborough based non-profit groups that serve seniors and youths are encouraged to sign up with a potential to receive grant award totaling more than $1,500.
“The Hillsborough Township Credit Card Advisory Committee will be accepting grant applications beginning March 2 for the first round of grants for 2020,” said Hillsborough Township Deputy Mayor Shawn Lipani, Liaison to the Credit Card Advisory Committee. “Applications will be made available on the township website or can be picked up in the administration office for any township based non-profit, senior or youth organizations to apply for grants up to $2,000, which are funded through the Hillsborough Rewards Credit Card Program.”
Officials said that completed applications must be submitted by April 10 to the administration office to be considered for eligible grant funding. To date, the Hillsborough Rewards Credit Card Program has awarded more than $85,000 in grants to community based non-profit organizations that serve township youth and seniors.
“The credit card program is at no cost to the taxpayers of Hillsborough,” officials said. “The program allows individuals or businesses to sign up for the special Hillsborough Township Rewards Visa Credit Card that gives back a portion of every charge, in the form of grants, to nonprofit local youth and senior citizen groups as recommended by the Credit Card Advisory Committee and approved by the township committee.”
The program was founded through a partnership between Hillsborough Township and Affinity Federal Credit Union (AFCU) to offer a township-endorsed rewards credit card. Administered through the Affinity Federal Credit Union – Hillsborough Branch, officials said individuals and businesses are invited to sign up for the card, and card users receive a point for every dollar spent, which they can then redeem at any future time for various reward options such as cash back, travel, gift cards, merchandise and more.
Officials said points have no expiration date or cap and 5,000 initial bonus points will be awarded after the first purchase made any card on the account.
“The unique feature of the Hillsborough Rewards Visa Credit Card, through AFCU, is that a percentage of the purchases is returned to the Hillsborough Credit Card trust fund,” officials said. “Funds deposited to the trust fund are then distributed to various township non-profit senior citizen groups and youth organizations through the credit card grant application process. These grant opportunities are self-funded through the account and do not cost the taxpayers of Hillsborough any tax resource dollars.”
Previous recipients of the grant program have been awarded to local groups such as Hillsborough Boy Scout Troop 1776 to purchase camping equipment including tents and kitchen supplies. The Woodfern Home and School Association received a grant to purchase digital cameras for fundraising.
The Hillsborough Rockettes & Rocket were able to purchase costume accessories with funds from the grant. The Hillsborough Women’s Club also benefited from the grant, using it to purchase a P.A. system and coffee urn for a basket auction to raise funds and give back to the community.
Other groups that have received funds are the Hillsborough HEAT baseball team, the South Woods Soccer Club, and the Family YMCA. The HEAT baseball team received funds to purchase batting helmets. The soccer club used it to purchase netting for backstops, and the YMCA was able to invest in aquatic swim equipment with the funds from the grant.