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The American Rescue Plan could provide essential training to boost jobs in construction, and we explore a trauma-informed approach to preventing marijuana use in teens.

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The U.S. military apologizes for a drone strike that killed 10 Afghan civilians, the Justice for J6 rally in Washington draws few, the CDC says it will help public health departments, and France recalls its ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia.

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Lawsuits stall debt relief for America's Black farmers; Idaho hospitals using "critical care" protocols; grant money boosts rural towns in Utah and more conservation acreage could protect the iconic sage grouse.

Grant Program Aids Communities of All Sizes

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Thursday, March 11, 2021   

BOISE, Idaho -- Applications are open for AARP's Community Challenge grant program.

The program provides funds for projects that can be produced quickly and make cities and communities more livable for people of all ages, which includes creating vibrant public spaces, increasing transportation options or, this year, supporting local recovery from the pandemic.

Randall Simon, director of communications for AARP Idaho, said the grant process is simple, in order to encourage communities of all sizes to apply.

"This isn't a long, drawn-out process," Simon explained. "This goes in, fixes a problem, supports a community and is done in a matter of months instead of years."

Now in its fifth year, the program has awarded 560 grants.

The deadline to apply is April 14. Selected projects must be completed by November 10th.

Simon noted the grants can especially be a boon for rural communities, which is why so many in Idaho have taken advantage of the program.

"An influx of thousands of dollars for a project in Kamiah is going to go further than it would in a metropolitan area like Boise," Simon observed.

In 2020, three Idaho cities received grants. The city of Cascade paved a half-mile walking trail. The grant helped Glenns Ferry open a new public space for residents. And the Gooding Public Library Foundation created an outdoor commons area.

Disclosure: AARP Idaho contributes to our fund for reporting on Consumer Issues, Energy Policy, Health Issues, and Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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