Skip to Content
Streetsblog California home
Streetsblog California home
Log In
AARP

Applications Open for AARP Community Challenge Grants

The Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust used a grant from AARP to help complete Golden Age Park. Image: Screengrab from AARP video

The now-annual round of AARP Community Challenge Grants for small scale, quick-action projects that can make communities better is now open for applications, with a deadline of March 22. The grants are available for nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and other organizations with an idea for a project that can improve their community in some way.

Eligible projects can be many things, from permanent physical improvements to temporary demonstrations to programming and services. The grants range from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands, depending on the scope of the project. The average grant amount since 2017 has been about $11,500, and more than three-quarters of the grants have been for less than $15 thousand. The largest grant awarded so far was for $50,000.

The AARP encourages innovative ideas; past grants in California have gone to

    • A program in West Sacramento that offered seniors training and practice using the on-demand transit service Via and Jump e-bikes, both of which were already available in the city.
    • A Habitat for Humanity program in Santa Cruz that helps residents add ADA-compliant accessory dwelling units to their properties to increase housing and maybe allow them to age in place.
    • The Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust, to create Golden Age Park on a vacant lot in the Westlake/MacArthur Park neighborhood. Community members there led a design process to create a community garden, shaded picnic areas, walking paths, public art, native-plant landscaping, and both a children's play area and outdoor fitness equipment for older adults.

Successful applications will be for projects that support residents age fifty or over and are inclusive, address disparities, directly engage volunteers, and:

    • Create vibrant public places
    • Deliver a range of transportation and mobility options
    • Support a range of housing options
    • Ensure a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion
    • Support communities’ efforts to build engagement and leverage funding available under new federal programs through laws including the American Rescue Plan Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and more
    • Increase civic engagement

Projects that are not eligible include partisan and political activities, publications, acquisition of land, buildings, or vehicles, and promotion of products and services.

For more information, check the website here. AARP is also sponsoring a webinar to answer questions and help applicants create a strong grant application. That will take place on February 17 at 11 a.m. Register at this link.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog California

Port Lobbyists Trying to Kill Bike and Pedestrian Safety in Oakland

Trucking/port lobbyists want to destroy a long-established plan to build protected bike lanes connecting Jack London Square, West Oakland, and downtown

July 12, 2024

Friday Video: Take a Spin on Boston’s Electric Cargo Bike Share

Can't afford a $7,000 Urban Arrow cargo e-bike ? In Boston, you can now rent one for just a few bucks.

July 12, 2024

Friday’s Headlines

5 recommendations for high-speed rail; Caltrans, stop building new freeway lanes already; "Data bikes" can collect information about bike path conditions; More

July 12, 2024

Next Week: Active Transportation Program Workshop

The good news is that there will be a Cycle 7. But it will be small, and there will be hard choices about what gets funded.

July 11, 2024

Metro and Caltrans Still Planning 605 Expansion, Plus Four Connecting Freeways

Metro and Caltrans are planning to spend billions of dollars widening the 605, 5, 10, 60 and 105 Freeways. Really.

July 11, 2024
See all posts