— Nearly 2.5 million North Carolinians live in areas that have joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities. Elected officials in these cities, towns and rural areas have pledged to prepare for an aging population by improving factors that affect the health and well-being of older adults. One such factor is use of outdoor spaces. This spring, AARP North Carolina is hosting events across the state to improve parks, community gardens and other places where people gather for recreation and relaxation. …

— RALEIGH— AARP is now accepting applications for the 2018 Community Challenge grant program to fund “quick-action” projects that spark change in local communities. The grant program, which is now in its second year, is part of AARP’s nationwide Livable Communities initiative, which aims to make communities great places to live for everyone. The Community Challenge is open to 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4) and 501(c)(6) nonprofits and government entities and other types of organizations will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Projects may …

— The Tar Heel State has mountains, a seaside and a renowned research hub. In addition, communities across the state are taking steps to become more age-friendly. More than 2.5 million North Carolinians live in areas that have joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities. The AARP state office wants to increase that number to 5 million by 2020. U.S. Census projections show 1 in 5 North Carolinians will be 65 or older by 2035. Communities that join the network commit …

— Loneliness isn’t just joyless. It can shorten your life, increasing the risk of premature death by 30 percent. That’s why AARP North Carolina has teamed up with the YMCA of Western North Carolina to sponsor the Disrupt Aging Community Health Challenge. The challenge aims to reduce social isolation while helping participants achieve their personal health goals. For details about the challenge and a calendar of events, go to DisruptAgingChallenge.org. To read about other efforts to make Buncombe County increasingly age-friendly, …

— An estimated 1 in 5 North Carolinians will be 65 or older by 2035. To help communities keep pace, AARP North Carolina will launch the Great Race to Age-Friendly in 2018. “This will be a friendly challenge for bragging rights as the best place in the state to age in place,” said Steve Hahn, AARP state communications director. So far, four North Carolina communities have joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities, which requires a commitment to improve factors that …

— RALEIGH — To help make North Carolina communities more livable for people of all ages, AARP NC awarded three “Community Challenge” grants to organizations working to expand opportunities and engagement for all residents. A livable community is one that is safe and secure, has affordable and appropriate housing and transportation options, and offers supportive community features and services. Once in place, those resources enhance personal independence; allow residents to age in place; and foster residents’ engagement in the community’s civic, …

— Charlotte, NC – With nearly a quarter of the state’s residents expected to be age 60 or older by the year 2030, Mecklenburg County took an important step to become a better place for people of all ages. On Sept. 20, 2016, County leaders announced that the County has applied for the World Health Organization’s status of “age-friendly” by joining the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities. The AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities helps participating communities become great places for all …

— RALEIGH, NC — North Carolina’s fastest growing demographic group is the 65+ cohort, and two counties in North Carolina are at the vanguard of working to stay ahead of the demographic change. Both Wake and Orange Counties are planning for the future by taking the steps needed to make the counties great places for residents of all ages. The two counties recently applied for the World Health Organization’s status of “age friendly,” by joining AARP’s Network of Age Friendly Communities. …

— Did you know that AARP offers workshops every week in the Charlotte region? Whether you’re an AARP member or not, over 50 or not, all of our programs are free of charge, free of any sales pitches, and all geared towards helping you achieve real possibilities. This summer we began offering our programs at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery! Come have a beverage on us and take advantage of our informative programs led by our dedicated facilitators!   Life Reimagined The life …

— WILMINGTON – When it comes to age-friendly communities, transportation and connectivity are key. The Cape Fear Public Transportation Authority, WAVE, is starting a special service for people ages 65 and older and those with disabilities. In order to provide the kind of services people demand, WAVE wants to hear from you. Join AARP members and others at a community forum on July 16 to tell WAVE what you think. The forum will be held from 2:00 to 4:00 pm at …