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AARP AARP States Oregon

AARP Awards Grants to Six Oregon Organizations as Part of its Nationwide Program to Make Communities More Livable



June 28, 2023

MEDIA CONTACT: Stacy Larsen, Communications Director

Portland, ORToday, AARP Oregon announced six organizations throughout the state will receive 2023 Community Challenge grants – part of the largest group of grantees to date with $3.6 million awarded among 310 organizations nationwide. Grantees will implement quick-action projects that help communities become more livable by improving public places; transportation; housing; digital connections; diversity, equity and inclusion; and more, with an emphasis on the needs of adults age 50 and older.

“AARP Oregon is committed to working with local leaders to improve residents’ quality of life through tangible changes,” said Bandana Shrestha, AARP Oregon State Director. “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 Oregonians 50 and over.”

Here in Oregon, projects funded include:

  • East Portland Resilience Coalition/ROSE CDC, $15,475—Helps support the Live Well Café pop-up events in two East Portland neighborhoods, Centennial and Parkrose, with a focus on disability and aging resilience.
  • City of Chiloquin, $14,540—Transforms a gravel lot into a vibrant, accessible park on City-owned land (with additional funding from The Klamath Tribes).
  • Douglas Public Health Network, $12,500—Extends specialized emergency preparedness education materials, infographics and kits to senior living communities, independent living facilities and senior centers.
  • Vida McKenzie Community Center: $10,045—Installs a combined AV and Hearing Loop system at the rebuilt Vida McKenzie Community Center to support all persons, regardless of hearing ability, to enjoy events and meetings equally.
  • REACH CDC (Portland): $10,000—Adds to REACH’s Community Builders Program (CBP), a free, bilingual, home repair program dedicated to providing aging-in-place modifications and critical fire and safety repairs for vulnerable community members.
  • Kindness Farm (Portland): $2,500—Intergenerational community will work together to create a community garden space for educational programs on growing food, native plants, and social engagement for community members, including historically underserved communities.

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, 2023.

This year, the AARP Community Challenge accepted applications across three different grant opportunities, including existing flagship grants in addition to new capacity-building microgrants for improving walkability and community gardens. New demonstration grants will focus on improving transportation systems, with funding support provided by Toyota Motor North America, and housing choice design competitions.

AARP is also bolstering its investment in rural communities, mobility innovation, transportation options, and health and food access.

“These grants continue to lead to long-term, positive changes in communities across the country,” said Nancy LeaMond, AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy & Engagement Officer. “This year, we are proud to support the largest number of projects in the program’s seven-year history, which will improve residents’ quality of life through tangible changes so everyone can thrive as they age.”

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, especially those age 50 and older. Since 2017, AARP Oregon has awarded 32 grants and over $265,000 through the program to nonprofit organizations and government entities across the state.

View the full list of grantees and their project descriptions at and learn more about AARP’s livable communities work at


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, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to the more than 100 million Americans 50-plus and their 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, visitñol or follow @AARP@AARPenEspañol and @AARPadvocates on social media.

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