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Baltimore, MD

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Developing projects based on residents' priorities

Description: As part of a smart cities initiative, the Office of Information and Technology developed an online tool to allow residents and businesses to access city services, such as applying for government services and paying taxes. Project organizers hope the tool will help city residents have an efficient experience when they engage with local government functions.

Brooklyn, NY

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Developing projects based on residents' priorities

Description: Organizers hoped to document the experiences of local African-American older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic via a Wellness Works initiative. The organization trained volunteers to conduct interviews using the StoryCorps model. Volunteers then interviewed more than 25 people from each of New York's five boroughs -- including their own grandparents. Information from the interviews helped shape local health policy, highlighting disparities in health care during the pandemic. Since the project concluded, organizers have continued to offer webinars and look for ways to preserve oral history.

Albuquerque, NM

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Developing projects based on residents' priorities

Description: The National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation set out to expand its popular book club for older adults. The club features Hispanic and Latinx authors, often inviting the writers to participate in club meetings. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Foundation shifted the book club to a virtual format, which helped expand attendance to members living outside of New Mexico. During club sessions, participants held lively conversations and developed book reviews and discussion questions. Featured books include Argentinian writer Selva Almada's novel, The Wind that Lays Waste and Maria Hinojosa's Once I Was You: A Memoir of Love and Hate in a Torn America. Project organizers say the club's success has inspired them to expand programming related to literature and history. Feedback gathered from book club participants will help inform these plans.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

New York, NY

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Access to high-speed internet

Description: This project will provide free, in-unit Wi-Fi access in affordable housing apartments for low-income and formerly homeless older adults.

New York, NY

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Capturing data and feedback from residents

Description: To gather data on the health impacts of noise pollution, New York University's Grossman School of Medicine installed sound sensors in Manhattan's Chinatown. Project organizers also created a bilingual website, which visualized the sensor data and featured a sound map and resources for self-guided sound walks. To inform the map, organizers made audio recordings of Chinatown residents talking about their experiences with noise. The Grossman School of Medicine then featured the information at the community's first Noise Forum, attended by policymakers and city agencies. Overexposure to noise is associated with health impacts such as anxiety, sleep disturbances and high blood pressure. Older adults face additional risks due to sensory changes that come with aging.

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