AARP invites local organizations and governments throughout Florida to apply for the 2022 AARP Community Challenge grant program, open until March 22, 2022. Grants fund rapid action projects that help communities become more liveable over the long term by improving public spaces, transportation, housing, civic engagement, coronavirus recovery, diversity and inclusion, and Moreover. Now in its sixth year, the grant program is part of AARP’s National Program Habitable communities initiative, which supports the efforts of cities, towns, neighborhoods and rural areas to become better places to live.
Jeff Johnson, Florida State Director of AARP said, “We are excited to relaunch the Community Challenge in 2022 to continue helping communities across Florida become great places for people of all backgrounds, abilities and ages, especially those over 50. Over time, the program has proven that early action projects can lead to lasting improvements for older people and their families.
AARP will prioritize proposals that support residents ages 50 and older, are inclusive, address disparities, directly engage volunteers, and aim to achieve one or more of the following outcomes for all residents, especially seniors 50 years and over:
- Support community efforts to strengthen engagement and leverage available funding through new federal programs through laws such as the American Rescue Plan Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, etc.
- Create dynamic public places that improve open spaces, parks and access to other amenities.
- Offer a range of transportation and mobility options that increase connectivity, walking, cycling, wayfinding, access to transport options and road improvements.
- Support a range of housing options which increases the availability of accessible and affordable choices.
- Be sure to focus on diversity, equity and inclusion while improving the built and social environment of a community.
- Increase civic engagement with innovative, hands-on projects that bring residents and local leaders together to address challenges and facilitate a greater sense of inclusion.
- Other community improvements; including health services, community development and coronavirus pandemic recovery.
Since 2017, AARP has awarded more than 800 grants – including 24 in Florida – through the Community Challenge to non-profit organizations and government entities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. The program provides direct support to all types of communities, with nearly 40% of past projects benefiting rural communities, 20% going to suburban areas and 40% improving urban areas. Granted projects have demonstrated the ability to help leverage additional funding or support from public and private funders, encourage replication and overcome local political barriers, and benefit from greater awareness and of greater commitment.
The Community Challenge is open to 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), and 501(c)(6) nonprofits and government entities. Other types of organizations are considered on a case-by-case basis. Grants can range from several hundred dollars for small, short-term activities to tens of thousands of dollars for larger projects.
The application deadline is March 22, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. ET. All projects must be completed by November 30, 2022. To submit an application and view past fellows, visit www.AARP.org/CommunityChallenge.
See last year’s Community Challenge Grant winners: https://www.aarp.org/livable-communities/community-challenge/info-2021/2021-grantees.html.
AARP Florida works collaboratively with communities across the state, bringing people together and providing resources and expertise to help make Florida counties, towns, and cities great places to live for people of all ages.
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose their lifestyle as they age. With a national presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and champions what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org.