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See More Grantees Like This One

Lynchburg, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: To organizers with the Downtown Lynchburg Association, an underused, dead-end street had potential to draw visitors downtown. The Association transformed the space into Art Alley -- a vibrant, outdoor art gallery. To activate the space, volunteers covered the pavement in turquoise, orange, pink and green paint. They also set up string lights overhead to provide illumination. Finally, they created the Spark Joy Gallery by installing panels that display digital artworks. Project organizers say the placemaking effort has since inspired nearby property owners to spruce up their building facades, and the Art Alley has become a must-see for tourists passing through town.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Grantees

Richmond, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public or private transit access

Description: To make waiting for the bus more comfortable and accessible for residents of the Northside neighborhood, Storefront for Community Design installed six benches. The organization partnered with Northside Strong, a coalition of community groups and local nonprofits, as well as environmental group Groundwork RVA. To determine the best locations for the benches, Northside Strong conducted a study and held public engagement sessions, which more than 200 residents attended. Project organizers then hosted multigenerational events where residents designed, painted and installed the benches. They offered stipends to 44 low-income community members for their time, labor and expertise throughout the project. Organizers with Storefront for Community Design say the community-wide collaboration shows the necessity of providing amenities, such as benches, for Richmond residents.

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.

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AARP Virginia State Office

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Suite 1005
Richmond, VA 23219
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Phone: 866-542-8164
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