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Age-friendly or livable communities have walkable streets, housing and transportation options, access to key services and opportunities for residents to participate in community activities.

The AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities encourages states, cities, towns and counties to prepare for the rapid aging of the U.S. population by paying increased attention to the environmental, economic and social factors that influence the health and well-being of older adults.

By doing so, these communities are better equipped to become great places, and even lifelong homes, for people of all ages. (Go ahead and take a look at The Member List now. Then come back to this page.) 

Map with stars indicating communities in the AARP Network of Age Friendly Communities

The Tool Kit

  • explains the milestones for initiating and achieving membership in the network
  • provides examples for developing plans that are unique to each  community
  • offers guidance for how to develop a framework that links back to an action plan
  • identifies the necessary indicators and data sources that support the evaluation phases

The AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities was launched in April 2012 and operates under the auspices of the World Health Organization's Age-Friendly Cities and Communities Program. The tool kit can be adapted as needed by AARP state offices, municipal and local governments, non-profit organizations, community partners and volunteers.

An Introduction

Learn about the program’s creation, members and how to join.

Step 1: Getting Started

Review the World Health Organization's “8 Domains of Livability” and other information to determine whether your community is ready to begin the process of enrolling in the network

All applications to the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities must include:

  • The completed membership application form
  • A "letter of commitment" from the community's highest-ranking elected official 
  • A digital file image that represents the community (e.g. a city seal, logo or iconic photograph) 

Learn more and find the enrollment documents: Preparing the Membership Materials

See The Member List of enrolled communities in the U.S. as well as their action plans and other information

Step 2: Planning (Year 1-2)

This step involves tips for how to put together an action plan and assess community needs by gathering baseline information and establishing indicators

Step 3: Implementation (Year 3-4)

Here’s how to successfully transition from the planning to implementation phase to forming program strategies

Step 4: Evaluation (Year 4-5)

This step gives advice for how to develop and assess an evaluation framework that links back to the action plan

Step 5: Connecting (Years 1-5+)

Learn how communities can support one another’s efforts within the national and international networks

  • If after reviewing this tool kit you still have questions about the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities, please email livable@aarp.org and put "NAFC Tool Kit" in the subject line.

Additional Resources

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AARP Livable Communities National Conference

Each fall, AARP Livable Communities hosts a conference of community representatives and AARP staff. Download the presentations and materials from each of our annual learning events: 2016 | 2015 2014 | 2013

Local leaders can find information and inspiration at AARP.org/livable

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