Today, AARP Mississippi announced four organizations throughout the state will receive 2022 Community Challenge grants – part of the largest group of grantees to date with $3.4 million awarded among 260 organizations nationwide. Grantees will implement quick-action projects that help communities become more livable in the long-term by improving public places; transportation; housing; diversity, equity and inclusion; digital access; and civic engagement, with an emphasis on the needs of adults age 50 and over.
“AARP Mississippi is committed to working with communities to improve residents’ quality of life through tangible changes,” said AARP Mississippi State Director Kimberly L. Campbell. “We are proud to collaborate with this year’s grantees as they make immediate improvements in their communities to jumpstart long-term change, especially for Mississippians 50 and over.”
Here in Mississippi, projects funded include:
Hattiesburg Landmark Preservation
The grant will help Hattiesburg Landmark Preservation improve a park/playground at Thames Elementary School, the only public park in Midtown Hattiesburg. The project includes updating a basketball court, adding four age-friendly benches at a walking track and creating two murals.
Jackson Heart Foundation – Museum Trail
The grant will help the Jackson Heart Foundation continue to develop the Museum Trail, a multi-use trail spanning a total of 4.34 miles connecting the local community to parks, museums, a farmers’ market, a food hall, and the Pearl River. The grant will assist in developing two multi-functional trailhead plazas that include a custom design seating area, public art, landscape, hardscaping, lighting, and removable bollards.
Noxubee County Historical Society
The grant will assist the Noxubee County Historical Society in completing the rehabilitation of the Macon Welcome Center in the downtown business district. The grant will help with computers, kitchen appliances, A/V equipment and an internet hotspot.
Waynesboro-Wayne County Library
The grant will help the Waynesboro-Wayne County Library provide free computer training to seniors in the community. The library will use the grant to purchase GrandPads, a tablet designed for older users.
AARP Community Challenge grant projects will be funded in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. True to the program’s quick-action nature, projects must be completed by November 30, 2022.
This year, AARP is bolstering its investment of affordable and adaptable housing solutions in response to the national housing crisis. With additional funding support from Toyota Motor North America, the program is also increasing its support of projects that improve mobility innovation and transportation options.
The grant program is part of AARP’s nationwide Livable Communities initiative, which supports the efforts of cities, towns, neighborhoods and rural areas to become great places to live for people of all ages. Since 2017, AARP Mississippi has awarded 11 grants through the program to nonprofit organizations and government entities across the state.
View the full list of grantees and their project descriptions at aarp.org/communitychallenge and learn more about AARP’s livable communities work at aarp.org/livable.
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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, www.aarp.org/espanol or follow @AARP, @AARPenEspanol and @AARPadvocates, @AliadosAdelante on social media.
This story is provided by AARP Mississippi. Visit the AARP Mississippi page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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