AARP Maryland Selects Five Baltimore Non-Profits for 2022 Community Challenge Grants, an Investment Totaling More Than $85K

Posted on 06/30/22 by Nancy Carr

AARP Maryland is awarding five Baltimore City non-profits a combined $85,650 in funding as winners of AARP 2022 Community Challenge Grants.

 
Now in its sixth year, the program supports quick-action projects that spark change and improve communities in key livability areas of public spaces, transportation, housing, civic engagement, coronavirus recovery, diversity and inclusion, plus other innovative projects. 

“We are incredibly excited to support these community-based organizations as they work to make immediate improvements, encourage promising ideas and jumpstart long-term change in Baltimore City,” shared AARP Maryland State President Jim Campbell. “Our goal at AARP Maryland is to support the efforts of our communities to be great places for people of all backgrounds, ages and abilities.”

About the Grantees

  • Home renovation and DIY
    Adopt a Block (www.adoptablockinc.com), a community-based home renovation and donation program that brings generations together to improve neighborhoods, is receiving $5,000 toward renovation of an abandoned home that will be renovated and provided mortgage-free to someone 50 or older who has never owned a home.
  • 131188729
    The Urban Oasis (www.theurbanoasis.org), an organization dedicated to the improvement of the Panway community, will use its $20,000 grant to construct the Clubhouse at the Lot, a two-story structure overlooking The Garden at the Lot.  It will house equipment for a community garden and provide gathering space for a program in which teens remove trash, mow lawns, plant trees and tend other gardens.
  • North Avenue Mission (www.northavemission.org) is using its $14,650 grant to upgrade a community garden in a low income neighborhood, making it more accessible with the creation of a rain garden and installation of a permeable paver path, a picnic table, lighting and a canopy.
  • Two smiling women in car
    The Saint Agnes Foundation (www.givesaintagnes.org) is receiving $26,000 to recruit new volunteers and participants for its Chaperone Program, which builds a network of volunteers to accompany older adults and adults with disabilities to and from non-emergency medical appointments.
  • Smiling woman enjoying mosaic art and craft class
    Art With a Heart (www.artwithaheart.net), whose mission is to mission is to enhance the lives of people in need through visual art, was granted $20,000 to support the creation of a glass and ceramic mosaic by city residents at a series of workshops for display outside the University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown Campus.

About the Community Challenge Grants
The six organizations are 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.

With this grantee class, 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 (such as the Saint Agnes Foundation’s Chaperone program).

All projects are expected to be completed by November 30, 2022, and 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, bike-ability, wayfinding, and access a wider range of transportation choices.
  • Encourage the availability of a range of housing by increasing accessible and affordable housing solutions.
  • Ensure a focus on diversity and inclusion while improving the built and social environment of a community.
  • 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 with innovative and tangible 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.

The full list of grantees across the nation can be found at www.aarp.org/communitychallenge. Information about Maryland’s 2021 winners is online at https://states.aarp.org/maryland/2021-md-grants.

The Community Challenge 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 Maryland has awarded 13 grants and $179,650 through the program to nonprofit organizations and government entities across the state. View the full list of grantees and their project descriptions at www.aarp.org/communitychallenge and learn more about AARP’s livable communities work at www.aarp.org/livable.

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About AARP

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, including more than 850,000 in Maryland, 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 Maryland. Visit the AARP Maryland page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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