Taking the Journey to Creating Livable Communities
America’s population is rapidly aging. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, by 2034, the nation will have more people age 65 or older than under 18. By 2060, nearly 1 in 4 people in the United States will be at least 65 years old.
Creating a place for all individuals to grow, thrive, and be included at any stage of life is vital to the success of creating communities that are livable for all as they age. In addition, well-designed, age-friendly communities foster economic growth and make for happier, healthier residents of all ages.
Through our nationwide Livable Communities initiative, AARP supports the efforts of neighborhoods, towns, cities, and rural areas to be great places for people of all ages. We believe that communities should provide safe, walkable streets; age-friendly housing and transportation options; access to needed services; and opportunities for residents of all ages to participate in community life.
AARP Connecticut invites community organizations and municipalities across the state to apply for our 2023 Livable Communities Grant Program dedicated to funding “quick-action” projects in Connecticut communities. Now in its sixth year, the grant program is an opportunity for communities to be creative and think of ideas for making small changes that will have a big impact.
Grants can range from small, short-term activities to larger, permanent solutions, but the maximum amount of any single grant will be $5,000. Grant applications should be for projects in Connecticut focused on improving the lives of older adults, related to housing and transportation options, access to key services, and opportunities to participate in community activities. But hurry, the application deadline is Wednesday, September 13. Comprehensive details about the program and applications can be found on www.aarp.org/ct.
The 8 Domains of Livability is also the framework used by states and communities enrolled in the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities, which provides cities, towns, counties, and states with the resources to become more age-friendly by tapping into national and global research, planning models, and best practices. Established in 2012, the network supports efforts to help people live easily and comfortably in their homes and communities as they age. AARP’s presence encourages older adults to take a more active role in their communities and have their voices heard. Initiatives focus on areas such as housing, caregiving, community engagement, volunteering, social inclusion, and combating isolation among older citizens.
To learn more about AARP’s livable communities work in communities across the country, please visit www.aarp.org/livable and find informational resources about the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities at www.aarp.org/agefriendly.
An age-friendly community is livable for people of all ages. YOU can create a livable community wherever you work, live, and learn. Please email us with any questions to CTLivable@aarp.org. We love to read about the great ideas people around the state have for making their communities more livable for people of all ages.
Nora Duncan is the state director for AARP Connecticut.
Livable communities offer transportation options that improve health, support vibrant neighborhoods and connect people to economic and social opportunities throughout their communities.