The city of Surprise has been named a finalist in a nationwide program that recognizes innovative communities.
The MetLife Foundation/Generations United America’s Best Intergenerational Communities Awards is supported by a MetLife Foundation grant and will honor top “innovative communities across America” June 14 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during its Global Intergenerational Conference.
Not only does Surprise boast a diverse age demographic but it also capitalizes on that status by inventively implementing intergenerational initiatives.
“We congratulate City of Surprise on being the National Finalist,” Generations United Executive Director Donna Butts said in a press release. “They show promising potential for becoming a place where members of every generation thrive and want to live.”
Surprise runs numerous programs designed to bridge generation gaps, including a Boy Scouts-allied career education program; a nonprofit vocational training program for adults with disabilities; a summer youth employment program; and services and special events such as Community Pride Day, block party support, citizen patrol, cleanup events, fundraising and a crisis response team.
“It is said you can live anywhere, but that does not make it a livable community,” competition judge Robert Blancato, a former executive director of the White House Conference on Aging, said in a press release. “These awards signify that a critical component of a livable community is one that fosters an environment where generations live and work together.”
Surprise ranks as a finalist alongside the Jenks, Oklahoma, public school system and the town of Yarmouth, Massachusetts, while top place this year belongs to Two Harbors, Minnesota.