Nearly $1.6 million will be distributed to fund the 159 projects
Today, AARP announced the awardees for its 2019 AARP Community Challenge grant program, including recipients right here in Maryland. A total of nearly $1.6 million will be distributed to fund 159 “quick action” projects across the country, helping communities make immediate improvements and jumpstart long-term progress to support residents of all ages. Nearly 1,700 applications were received from non-profits and government entities for the program, now in its third year. Each of the projects, which must be completed by November 4, is designed to achieve one or more of the following outcomes:
- Create vibrant public places that improve open spaces, parks and access to other amenities.
- Demonstrate the tangible value of “Smart Cities” by engaging residents and policymakers in accessing, understanding and using data to increase quality of life for all.
- Deliver a range of transportation and mobility options that increase connectivity, walkability, bikeability, wayfinding, access to transportation options and roadway improvements.
- Support the availability of a range of housing that increases accessible and affordable housing options.
Here in Maryland, grantees include:
- Fells Point Main Street (https://fellspointmainstreet.org/):
- Fells Point Main Street was awarded funding for their ‘Sunday in the Street’ initiative which will include a multitude of street vendors and family centered activities right in the heart of Fells Point. Streets will be closed during these events with new bollard style planters to provide a safe place for people of all ages to mill about and enjoy everything local Baltimore businesses have to offer in Fells Point.
- The Baltimore Office of Information and Technology (https://technology.baltimorecity.gov/):
- The Baltimore Office of Information and Technology has been awarded funds to develop technological systems around a centralized online touch point, allowing residents and businesses to more easily utilize city services to improve their daily lives. They will begin designing surveys, conducting interviews, and focus groups to obtain feedback from residents and develop best practices in this newly designed platform.
“These are major steps forward in modernizing and connecting with community members to create a more engaging Charm City,” said AARP Maryland State Director Hank Greenberg. “Creating Livable Communities in digital and physical spaces allow for meaningful and positive neighborhood interactions for people of all ages and we are excited to see the results.”
The full list of grantees can be found at www.aarp.org/communitychallenge.
“AARP has teams on the ground in communities across the country who hear from mayors, community leaders and local residents about the value of getting quick wins to create long-term change. We developed the Community Challenge grant program to answer that call and help build momentum for more livable communities nationwide,” said Nancy LeaMond, AARP Executive Vice President, Community, State and National Affairs. “This year, we are proud to fund more projects in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.”
The Community Challenge grant program is part of AARP’s nationwide Livable Communities initiative which helps communities become great places to live for residents of all ages. As part of this, AARP staff and volunteers are working across the country, engaging and mobilizing residents, delivering technical assistance and expertise to local leaders and organizations, and supporting the work of the 381 communities and four states that have enrolled in the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities.
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation’s largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.
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