The grant will help meet the need for safe outdoor spaces during the pandemic

Los Angeles, Calif. Homes 4 Families has been named a recipient of a 2020 AARP Community Challenge grant, one of eight grantees selected in California. Homes 4 Families will use the AARP Community Challenge grant to improve the Palmdale Veteran Enriched Neighborhood by creating a vibrant sitting area along the meandering pathway that connects the community. This project will encourage walking, being in the outdoors, social interactions, and improve safety for low-income and aging veterans.

“Homes 4 Families is proud to be selected for the AARP Community Challenge Grant,” said Donna Deutchman, CEO of Homes 4 Families. “Independence, health, and socialization are important for all veterans, and especially for aging or disabled veterans. This space will help contribute to the long-term health and happiness of our nation’s heroes.”

This year, the AARP Community Challenge received an overwhelming number of applications. Through the national program, AARP announced in late August the largest number of Community Challenge grants in its four-year history, awarding more than $2.4 million among 184 grantees nationwide – including six in California. The six national grantees included Circulate San Diego, the City of San Leandro, Echo Park Film Center, Friends of the Hayfork Park, Los Angeles River State Park Partners, and United Way Monterey County. 

As a result of the overwhelming number of applications and impactful projects submitted for the 2020 Community Challenge, AARP California was compelled to select two additional projects to fund. These two projects include Homes 4 Families, as well as the City of Fremont – with their projects officially being announced today. 

“We are excited to announce our support for Homes 4 Families as they work to make immediate improvements in Palmdale, encourage promising ideas and jumpstart long-term change,” said Nancy McPherson, AARP California State Director. “Our goal at AARP California is to support the efforts of our communities to be great places for people of all backgrounds, ages and abilities and the coronavirus pandemic has only underscored the importance of this work.” 

All eight California Grantees will implement “quick-action” projects to create more livable communities across the state. All projects are expected to be completed by December 18, 2020, 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 and demonstrate the tangible value of “Smart Cities” by bringing together local leaders and residents from all backgrounds to address challenges. 
  • Support coronavirus response and recovery efforts by ensuring older adults’ access to information, essential services, and civic life.

The full list of grantees and projects can be found at www.aarp.org/communitychallenge.


The Community Challenge grant program is part of AARP’s nationwide Livable Communities initiative, which helps communities become great places to live for residents of all ages. View an interactive map of all of the Community Challenge projects and AARP California’s livable communities work at www.aarp.org/livable.