WVPA Sharing

West Virginia communities awarded AARP Community Challenge 2020 Grants

184 quick-action projects help make communities more livable for people of all ages

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The AARP Community Challenge 2020 Grant awards have been announced. West Virginia has two winners: Charleston and Ronceverte.

In response to extraordinary community needs this year, AARP is investing additional funding to support projects in a range of diverse communities benefitting people of all backgrounds, ages and abilities, and projects that support local governments and organizations as they respond to and recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Two communities in West Virginia will benefit from this investment:

  • Charleston: City of Charleston
    To ensure that an existing dog park is usable for residents of all ages, grant funds will be used to provide seating, shade amenities and separate play areas for dogs of different sizes. 
  • Ronceverte: Main Street Ronceverte
    To assist the city’s aging population and provide an outdoor communal space for social distancing, funding will be used to create a pocket park with a shade canopy, accessible tables and benches, raised flower beds and safe walkways.

For the fourth annual AARP Community Challenge, AARP received more than 2,800 applications from nonprofits and government entities, resulting in a highly competitive selection process. A total of more than $2.4 million is being distributed to fund 184 quick-action projects across the country, helping urban, rural and suburban communities make immediate improvements and jumpstart long-term progress to support residents of all ages.

The winning projects are designed to achieve one or more of the following outcomes:

  • Create vibrant public places by improving open spaces and parks and activating Main Streets.
  • Deliver a range of transportation and mobility options by increasing connectivity, walkability, bikeability, wayfinding and access to a wider range of transportation choices.
  • Encourage the availability of a range of housing by increasing accessible and affordable housing solutions.
  • Increase civic engagement and demonstrate the tangible value of “Smart Cities” by bringing together local leaders and residents from all backgrounds to address challenges.
  • Support COVID-19 response and recovery efforts by ensuring older adults’ access to information, essential services and civic engagement. (These 24 coronavirus-related projects are present within the collection below as well as in a separate list.)
  • Other community improvements based on the most important needs in a community and the best quick-action solutions for addressing them.

See the List of 24 COVID-19 Related Projects from the 2020 AARP Community Challenge

AARP Livable Communities, August 20, 2020

Find articles about the impact of AARP Community Challenge projects

Go to the AARP Community Challenge Home Page

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