Abbeville Mainstreet has been named a recipient of a 2021 AARP Community Challenge grant, one of six grantees selected in Louisiana.
The $7,000 grant will support the installation of a walking trail and fitness stations in the Lafitte Drive-In Park.
“The AARP Community Challenge grant allows the City of Abbeville to build a fitness trail in one of our brand-new parks, Lafitte Park, giving the public a fun way to motivate and encourage people to exercise,” said Charlene Beckett, Main Street manager.
This project is part of the largest group of grantees to date with $3.2 million awarded among 244 organizations nationwide. Grantees will implement quick-action projects to promote livable communities by improving housing, transportation, public spaces, civic engagement, and connection with family, friends, and neighbors with an emphasis on the needs of the 50-plus. Many of this year’s awards support revitalizing communities adversely impacted by the pandemic and include a focus on diversity, inclusion, and disparities.
All projects are expected to be completed by November 10, 2021, and are designed to achieve one or more of the following outcomes:
- Create vibrant public places by improving open spaces and parks and activating main streets.
- Deliver a range of transportation and mobility options by increasing connectivity, walkability, bikeability, wayfinding, and access a wider range of transportation choices.
- Encourage the availability of a range of housing by increasing accessible and affordable housing solutions.
- Increase civic engagement by bringing together residents and local leaders to address challenges and facilitate a greater sense of inclusion.
- Ensure a focus on diversity and inclusion while improving the built and social environ- ment of a community.
- Support local recovery from the coronavirus pandemic by emphasizing economic development, improvements to public spaces, and transportation services.
The Community Challenge 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 Louisiana has awarded six grants and $74,000 through the program to nonprofit organizations and government entities across the state. View the full list of grantees and their project descriptions at www.aarp.org/commnitychallenge and learn more about AARP’s livable communities work at www.aarp.org/liv- able.