CommUNITY First Day 9.24.24

SAVE THE DATE – CommUNITY First Day to take place on Tuesday, September 24th!

2024 Application Process

The application for nonprofits to be considered as project host sites will open on Tuesday, June 18, 2024. OceanFirst Foundation accepts requests via its online Grant Request Portal. All projects will take place during the hours of 1-5pm on Tuesday September 24. A limited number of projects, local to Toms River will be accepted for 8-12pm. If your nonprofit does not have access to technology or needs special assistance, we can work with you to submit via other means. Applicaitons to host a team of WaveMakers on CommUNITY First Day can be found here. Please note, an application submission is not a guarantee of a WaveMaker project site for CommUNITY First Day. Be sure to follow our social media to stay up to date!

CommUNITY First Day is a collaboration between OceanFirst WaveMaker volunteers and nonprofits throughout OceanFirst Bank’s footprint. WaveMaker volunteers will set out for an afternoon of volunteering completing various projects that help to free up resources for nonprofits to better serve their mission.

CommUNITY First Day will be held on Tuesday, September 24 from 1-5pm. A limited number of projects A limited number of projects, local to Toms River will be considered for 8-12pm to accommodate OFB team members.  Nonprofits requesting a project outside of September 24th from 1-5pm should contact Julie Bellezza, Volunteer & Community Engagement Coordinator to discuss options.

The application will be available through our grant portal beginning on June 18 and will close on July 17. The application can be found here. If your nonprofit does not have access to technology or needs special assistance, we can work with you to submit via other means.   

Nonprofits are asked to submit one project request. Due to the volume of requests, we are not able to fulfill more than one project site/request per nonprofit.

All types of projects will be considered for our WaveMaker Volunteers.  Some examples of projects completed during CommUNITY First Day 2023 include garden clean ups, presenting financial literacy education to school aged children, arts and crafts with clients and gala prep.

If you are unsure about your project request, please contact Julie Bellezza to discuss.

WaveMaker volunteers are unable to complete requests that would require a skilled professional–we are not electricians or plumbers. Additionally, any projects that require the use of power tools or specialized equipment will require that you supply appropriate protective gear.

For example: If your nonprofit wants branches cut with the use of a chainsaw, your staff must provide protective eye gear and a lesson on proper and safe use.

OceanFirst has almost 1,000 WaveMaker volunteers across the Bank’s footprint. We are excited to partner with organizations from Boston to Baltimore. Groups can range from 1 to 100 WaveMakers!


Applicants will be notified in a timely manner if the proposed project is approved and staffed with WaveMakers. Team details and relevant information regarding your WaveMaker team will be provided prior to CommUNITY First Day.

Q& A sessions will be held on Wednesday, August 14th at 10AM and Tuesday, August 20th at 10AM. These calls are optional to attend, however, this would be a great opportunity to make sure you are ready to host a team of WaveMaker volunteers or have any last-minute questions answered!

We get it, things come up and illness happens. Please let Julie know as soon as possible if your nonprofit is no longer able to host a WaveMaker team.

We wish we can accommodate every project request but unfortunately cannot. Projects will be accepted and filled on a first come first serve basis. All applicants will be notified no later than September 9, 2024, if their project has been filled with WaveMaker volunteers.