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Richmond, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2018

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: The Greater Richmond Age Wave Coalition hoped to beautify the Green Park neighborhood and foster relationships between neighbors. To do this, the nonprofit worked to provide community gardening opportunities to residents. To allow older adults to grow produce at home, the nonprofit built 25 garden boxes. Additionally, they created an outdoor courtyard space with raised garden beds at Highland Park Apartments. The Coalition hired local youth to construct and deliver the self-water boxes. The Coalition also held two community gardening events. To help people participate, they offset a portion of public transportation fares for attendees. The Age Wave Coalition's gardening efforts operate under the talent-sharing model, which connects experienced gardeners with people interested learning more about growing fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs.

Winnemucca, NV

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: A large community garden in one of Winnemucca's parks had fallen into disrepair. But organizers with Age- and Dementia-Friendly Winnemucca saw the space's potential and set out to revitalize the community space. Organizers wanted to make the garden accessible, allowing people with mobility issues to garden while seated, or simply observe others while they work. To achieve this, they installed hip-height raised garden beds onsite. Additionally, they laid down pavers to create smooth surface suitable for people using wheelchairs and walkers. New benches completed the transformation, giving visitors a comfortable space to rest. To ensure the garden remains well cared for, the age-friendly initiative also purchased a weedwhacker for the site, along with a drip irrigation system. Organizers say the project's success inspired local leaders to consider other ways to improve the park.

Rugby, ND

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: To help Rugby's residents access fresh produce, the Geographical Center Historical Society worked to turn an underused outdoor space into a fruit orchard. The space sits on the campus of the Prairie Village Museum, which is located in a food desert. To activate the space, Society reseeded the grass and planted fruit trees and shrubs. They also installed ADA-accessible park benches, tables and bike racks. Project organizers plan to invite students to the orchard for demonstrations on techniques for picking, washing and preserving the fruits.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

AK

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Accessory dwelling units, tiny homes and manufactured housing

Description: This project will collect and analyze ordinances regulating accessory dwelling units (ADUs) with the aim of creating a best practices toolkit and a model ordinance for communities.

Anchorage, AK

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2017

Project Category: Engaging people in transportation options/safety

Description: Alaska Trails worked with Bike Anchorage to shape sustainable transportation in Anchorage. The two organizations educated residents about the city's Non-Motorized Transportation Plan, an effort to integrate bike, pedestrian and train networks into a multi-modal system. They also informed residents about Anchorage's Complete Streets policy, which aims to remake city streets to safely accommodate pedestrians, bicyclists, drivers and bus riders of all ages and abilities. In addition, Alaska Trails supported Safe Routes to School, an initiative that promotes walking and bicycling to school. This outreach effort included social media posts, print and television news coverage and a newsletter. Alaska Trails continues to work to encourage locals to use the state's trails and each year Bike Anchorage holds a Winter Bike Fest to promote cycling in the city.

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