The V.I. Council on the Arts has been named a recipient of a 2020 AARP Community Challenge Grant, one of only 184 grantees selected in the U.S., to be used to expand its Yacht Haven Public Arts Initiative.

The initiative allowed five local artists to create and display their work in Yacht Haven in the form of murals and sculptures. V.I. Council on the Arts will expand the project beyond the Yacht Haven property and give seniors and elder artists the opportunity to pilot this project.

More than $2.4 million in Community Challenge Grants was awarded nationwide. All projects are expected to be completed by December 18, 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.

“We are incredibly excited to support the Virgin Islands Council on the Arts as they work to make immediate improvements in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, encourage promising ideas and jumpstart long-term change,” said State Director Troy de Chabert-Schuster.

“Our goal at AARP in the Virgin Islands 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.”