AARP Puerto Rico has chosen ACOMER PR as the winner of the AARP Community Challenge 2021 Program, which provides funding for rapid action to improve communities in the United States and in Puerto Rico.
This is the fourth year of the program, which received 11 of the 3,563 applications received across the United States on the island. This initiative is part of the AARP Lifestyle Community Program, which aims to make communities sustainable, accessible, and active for all ages.
AARP-PR and ACOMER PR will launch this collaborative project starting from five developments, with the aim of improving the health and food security of many generations of social integration, productivity of the elderly in communities, recent natural disasters and epidemics. Community gardens in the municipalities of Loiza, Kamui, Orokovis, Ponce and Las Marias, ”said Jose R., Director of AARP-PR State.
He also elaborated on the benefits of creating and managing community gardens, saying, “The elderly contribute to their economic well-being by combating social exclusion, increasing physical activity and nutrition, and lowering food costs and income. It can be produced by selling agricultural products.
“In our new world and virtual reality, community gardens encourage the interaction of all generations, and it is vital to facilitate dialogue and learning,” said Jose Domingo Soto, executive director of ACOMER PR. Knowledge and culture in life and in every community.
He explained that each garden was designed by the residents of the community in accordance with their reality and needs. “Each community center provides education and training services in disaster management, food security and technology use,” Domingo said.
In addition to the creation and maintenance of both the Akron and Soto Rivera community gardens, ACOMER PR will assist and participate in the Agricultural Extension Service Program of the University of Puerto Rico – Maaygez Campus, which offers a series of workshops. And supervises agricultural techniques.
“This relationship between agricultural agents, community leaders and ACOMER PR will last for about a year until the communities acquire the knowledge and skills to take care of their own gardens,” Soto said.
Acarion has launched 244 projects in 2021 through the AARP Community Challenge Program for a total of $ 3.2 million for community organizations in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. To achieve the following goals
- Increase civic engagement with realistic and creative projects
- Create active public spaces
- Offer a variety of transportation and communication options
- Support the availability of different housing
- Show the real value of “smart cities”
- Support rehabilitation efforts related to local epidemics
- Introduce diversity and inclusion approach
“In recent years, we have seen tangible results in infrastructure improvements that encourage the participation and social integration of all generations in our local communities,” he said.
First, the Sila Maria Calderion Foundation contributes to the project for women’s entrepreneurship and development. Second, through this initiative, which promotes safety and community life, the San Patricio Community Coalition (CCCI) installed LED lights on San Patricio Street. A.D. In 2020, Ponce Municipality contributed to the community’s art and renovation project, renovating common areas and inspiring the community, and promoting art and crafts.