Salisbury receives AARP grant: Part of nationwide program to make communities more livable

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 30, 2024

SALISBURY — The AARP announced that the city of Salisbury has received a 2024 Community Challenge grant — part of the largest group of grantees to date with $3.8 million awarded among 343 organizations nationwide.

 “AARP North Carolina is committed to working with local leaders, advocates and policymakers to make our communities better places to live for people of all ages, especially those 50 and older,” said Rebecca Gilbert, AARP associate state director for the Charlotte Region. “We are proud to collaborate with this year’s grantees as they make immediate improvements to address long-standing and emerging challenges across our communities.”

The $2,000 AARP grant will provide funding for additional, much needed, bicycle parking for visitors and temporary residents to Rowan Helping Ministries. This support for this project is made possible due to a grant from AARP with funding support provided by Toyota Motor North America.

“We owe a tremendous thanks to AARP and Toyota Motor North America for their generous support to our unsheltered population,” said Vickie Eddleman, traffic engineering coordinator. “Rowan Helping Ministries is a vital part of our community, helping those who need it most. The homeless often don’t own a vehicle and must depend on alternative methods of transportation, including bicycles. There are limited resources around the facilities to keep their bicycles safe. These new bike racks are a win where safety and security of their prized possessions are sometimes lacking.”

This year, AARP awarded three different grant opportunities, including flagship grants, capacity-building microgrants for improving walkability, bikeability and accessible home modifications and demonstration grants that focus on equitable engagement to reconnect communities, housing choice design competitions and improving digital connections to endure disasters.

With funding support from Toyota Motor North America, the program is increasing its investment in pedestrian safety projects that will improve streets and sidewalks, create vibrant pedestrian infrastructure, engage community members and much more. AARP is also bolstering its investment in community resilience, rural communities and addressing disparities.

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. Since 2017, AARP has invested $479,000 through 39 grants to nonprofit organizations and government entities across North Carolina.

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 Dec. 15.