Village Movement Sweeping the U.S. Gets $350,000 to Expand
More than 40 million Americans aged 65 or older will have more choices and opportunities to remain in their homes and stay connected to their communities as they age. As Older Americans Month gets underway with the highly relevant theme, “Older Americans: Connecting the Community,” MetLife Foundation awarded a $350,000 grant to NCB Capital Impact to support the expansion of the Village to Village (VtV) Network with its partner Beacon Hill Village.
“Older adults and Baby Boomers wishing to remain in their homes as they age need to be supported in their communities,” said Dennis White, MetLife Foundation president and CEO. “MetLife Foundation is committed to helping people age in place and supporting The Village to Village Network is a way for us to help older Americans live their lives with maximum independence, while remaining in their own homes and communities.”
Over the past five years, the grassroots Village movement has swept the nation. The program has grown to 55 Villages providing assistance to approximately 11,000 older Americans. Villages are providing an affordable option for those aged 50 and older, allowing them to stay in their own homes and remain active, independent and civically engaged in their communities.
Launched in 2010, the VtV Network provides a national peer to peer network to help communities establish and sustain their own Villages, which are self-governing, membership driven, non-profit organizations. The Villages are run by small staffs and volunteers working together to coordinate affordable services, including transportation, in-home medical care, home repairs and other day-to-day needs for people wishing to remain in their home and community..
“When you think about the fact that by 2032, there will be more people over 65 than people under 15, we have no time to lose in getting sustainable Villages in place,” noted Candace Baldwin, co-director of the Village to Village Network.
MetLife Foundation’s support will be used to:
- promote sustainable development of Villages in targeted communities;
- develop new tools and resources to facilitate new and ongoing communities;
- develop a seed grant program to help new and existing Villages become more sustainable;
- research the Village model and identify what makes them sustainable, including the model’s impact on its members; and
- expand membership benefits for the VtV Network through webinars, a national conference, teleconferences, on-site support and creation of a national Village Buddy system.