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1. SPONSOR: AARP Purpose Prize Contest (“Promotion” or “Purpose Prize Contest”) is sponsored by AARP, 601 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20049 (“Sponsor”).

2. BRIEF OVERVIEW: The AARP Purpose Prize Contest applications will be accepted between 12:00 AM Eastern Time (“ET”) on October 25, 2023, and 5:00 PM ET on February 29, 2024 (“Promotion Period”). Sponsor’s computer, or that of its designee, shall serve as the official timekeeper for the Purpose Prize Contest. The Purpose Prize Contest consists of an application process in which founders of 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) non-profit organizations will apply for prizes awarded to Winners and their Founded Non-Profits based on the judging criteria outlined in these Official Rules. More specific details are stated below.

3. ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must be legal residents of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia, who are at least fifty (50) years old as of February 29, 2024, and who founded the non-profit organization for which they are applying at the age of forty (40) or older and still have an active role in the organization. Applicants must have founded a 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) non-profit organization with its principal place of business located in the United States that is in good standing in its state of formation and exempt from federal income tax under section 501(a) the Internal Revenue Code at the time of Applicant’s submission and throughout the Purpose Prize Contest selection process (“Founded Non-Profit”). Officers, directors, and employees of Sponsor, its subsidiaries, affiliates, advertising/promotion agencies, and/or their affiliates, assigns, agents, vendors or representatives (hereinafter referred to collectively as “Sponsor & Others”), and all other persons or entities associated with the development, administration, judging, promotion, execution of this Purpose Prize Contest are not eligible to apply. AARP-appointed volunteers and staff and their immediate family members are not allowed to apply. Former AARP-appointed volunteers and staff and their immediate family members may apply only after a seven (7) year grace period. Additionally, past Purpose Prize and AARP Purpose Prize winners, past fellows from the previous two (2) years of AARP Purpose Prize classes, current AARP or AARP Foundation grantees, elected officials, individuals whose Founded Non-Profit is exclusively religious or sectarian, individuals that work for organizations that share a board member with AARP and members of the same household and immediate families (e.g. parents, children, spouse, siblings) are not eligible. The Purpose Prize Contest is subject to all applicable federal, state, and local laws and is void where prohibited.


A) Purpose Prize Contest: There will be a total of up to seven (7) Prizes awarded to Winners selected from a pool of eligible Applicants. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any Applicant at any time and for any reason should Sponsor determine that Applicant does not properly represent Sponsor’s mission, goals, and policies or if the actions of Applicant or his/her Founded Non-Profit bring tarnish of any kind to the AARP brand/trademark. An Applicant may only submit one (1) application which will require the submission of the following documents:

  • A resume
  • Three reference letters (In the case of co-founders, each co-founder is required to submit three letters. A letter of reference that identifies both co-founders may be submitted by both co-founders.)
  • A copy of Applicant’s Founded Non-Profit’s IRS determination letter or most recent IRS Form 990
  • Applicant’s organization’s annual budget, including income and expenses

In the case of co-founders, no more than two (2) individuals may apply and a primary and secondary applicant must be designated within the one (1) application submission. Each co-applicant must meet all the criteria and submit all required documents. Only one (1) application per individual.

The entry and selection process are as follows:

Individuals may apply by visiting www.aarp.org/apply during the Promotion Period and completely filling out the Official Application Form and submitting all requested documents. Applicant’s Founded Non-Profit must be mission-driven and be able to show the social impact of its work. Creative endeavors that do not include social impact work will not be considered. Below are examples of relevant topics/issues:

  • Intergenerational work (opportunities for different generations to come together to share their experience, knowledge, and skills)
  • Rethinking the workplace (jobs, work environments, alternative approaches)
  • Caregiving and caregiver resources (support for vulnerable populations and the people who care for them)
  • Public health (protecting and improving the health of people and their communities by addressing healthy lifestyles, nutrition, disease prevention, mental health, addiction, maternal health, etc.)
  • Financial health (financial stability, resilience, economic opportunity, etc.)
  • Hunger (food insecurity, waste, distribution, etc.)
  • Affordable housing (safe, well-managed, and affordable housing and services)
  • Social connections (reducing isolation among vulnerable community members)
  • Civic engagement and community development (helping people be active participants in building and strengthening their communities)
  • Diversity, equity and inclusion (improving the representation, fair treatment and experiences of underserved populations)
  • Environmental issues (combatting the challenges facing the planet)
  • Education (school- or community-based programs that help children attain educational goals)
  • Youth development (programs that are not school-based that serve the needs of vulnerable children and teens)
  • Arts and culture (using art and culture as tools to engage communities in positive change)
  • Peace and security rights (establishing or preserving justice and equality by peaceful means)
  • Homelessness (addressing the needs of the homeless population)
  • Veterans (providing services for veterans, advocating for veterans' rights, empowering veterans)
  • Animal protection (ensuring animal welfare, promoting animal companionship with vulnerable populations)

(B) Judging and Selection Process: The judging will consist of four (4) rounds

  • Round 1 (Applicant round) all eligible applicants reviewed; up to 150 Applicants selected to move forward
  • Round 2 (Candidate round) up to 25 Candidates selected to move forward
  • Round 3 (Finalist round) up to 15 Finalists selected to move forward
  • Round 4 (Winner round) jury selects up to seven (7) Winners with final approval by an AARP Executive

Those selected for each round will be selected from all remaining applications from the previous round, which were all originally received throughout the Promotion Period. Candidates and Finalists will be selected by a group of AARP staff reviewers and/or external reviewers. An external jury will select up to seven (7) winners. All selected Winners will be subject to the final approval of an AARP Executive.

AARP Reviewers and Jurors will evaluate Applicants on the following criteria:

Impact (30 points): Clearly documenting your Founded Non-Profit’s impact on the population it serves.

Implementation (25 points): Detailing how your Founded Non-Profit is structured, staffed, funded, and positioned to grow.

Innovation (15 points): Demonstrating a unique approach, tactic or strategy to address a social issue.

Personal Story (20 points): Showing a connection between your work and your own lived experience.

Effect of the Purpose Prize Award (10 points): Demonstrating your Founded Non-Profit’s ability to meaningfully utilize the cash prize and organizational supports provided to Winners.

In the event of a tie, tied applications will be re-judged based on the same criteria listed above and the Round Winner will be determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. Applicants agree to the Official Rules and to the decisions of the AARP Reviewers and Jurors and an AARP Executive, which shall be final and binding in all respects. Award of a prize to any Round Winner will be subject to verification of that Round Winner’s eligibility and compliance with these Official Rules.

Jury Award

The Winner with the highest score in Round 4 and approved by an AARP Executive will receive the Jury Award.

Contest Round Administration and Round Winner Notification:

Round 1 (Applicant Round) All Applicants must submit their applications by 5:00pm ET on February 29, 2024. The failure to complete the application form or comply with the applicable instructions will result in disqualification of said Applicant, the forfeiture of his or her interest in the prize and the selection of a substitute Applicant from among all remaining eligible entries. AARP Reviewers will identify all eligible applications that meet the outlined Purpose Prize Contest criteria. From the eligible applications, the AARP Reviewers will select up to 150 applicants to continue to Round 2. Applicants will be notified if they will/will not continue to the next round via email on or about mid-March 2024. The failure to complete the application form, provide all requested documents or comply with the applicable instructions will result in disqualification of said Applicant, the forfeiture of his or her interest in the prize and the selection of a substitute Applicant from among all remaining eligible entries.

Round 2 (Candidate Round) During the Candidate round, up to 25 Candidates will be selected by AARP Reviewers to continue to Round 3 of internal reviews. Candidates that are not selected to continue to the next round will be notified via email in early April 2024.

Round 3 (Finalist Round) AARP will notify the Candidates that they have been selected in early April 2024, and schedule virtual panel interviews to meet the Applicants and to assess first-hand the work of their Founded Non-Profits in action. These panel interviews will take place throughout April 2024. In addition, Applicants selected as Candidates will undergo background checks during this round. The results of the panel interviews and the background checks will be considered in the remaining rounds. By early May 2024, up to 15 Finalists from the Finalist round will be selected.

Round 4 (Winners Round): By mid-July 2024, the Jury will select seven (7) Winners. By mid-late July 2024 an AARP Executive will review the seven (7) Winners and remaining Finalists to confirm the final Winners. Finalists that are not selected as Winners will be notified that they were not selected to move forward by mid-late July 2024. Winners will be notified by phone and via email on or about mid-late July 2024. Winners must email purposeprize@aarp.org within five (5) days of notification to claim prize. The return of any prize notification message or document as undeliverable may result in disqualification of the applicable Winner, the forfeiture of his or her interest in the prize and the selection of a substitute Winner from among all remaining eligible Finalists.

All Purpose Prize Contest Finalists must disclose any current or prior relationship, financial or otherwise, including without limitation, other support they have received from AARP, AARP Foundation, AARP Services, Inc., or Jurors and the organizations they represent. Other support includes but is not limited to: technical assistance, promotion and advocacy. A current or prior relationship, financial or otherwise, does not immediately disqualify a Finalist, but such factors will be considered in finalizing a diverse pool of Finalists. Except where prohibited by law, Winners must complete an Affidavit of Eligibility and Liability and Publicity Release (“Affidavit”) in accordance with the instructions listed in the prize notification correspondence. If a Winner fails to provide the Affidavit within the required period of time, Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, disqualify the Winner and select an alternate potential winner. Non-compliance with these Official Rules, failure to return all required documentation by the stated deadline or Sponsor’s inability to contact a potential winner, as determined in Sponsor’s sole discretion, may result in disqualification. Sponsor’s decisions are final and binding in all matters related to the Purpose Prize Contest.

In the event there are not seven (7) eligible Finalists available for selection as a Winner, Sponsor reserves the right to reduce the number of Winners to the number of individuals that are eligible for selection based on the selection criteria provided herein.

(C) Prizes: Each Winner’s Founded Non-Profit will receive $50,000 in celebration of the Winner’s achievement and in furtherance of the Founded Non-Profit’s mission. The Winners will receive: (1) The opportunity to participate in a 1-year AARP Purpose Prize peer cohort; (2) Attendance at the AARP Purpose Prize Award Event (virtual or in-person); (3) Access to internal AARP and external resources to support their work. The Founded Non-Profit of the Jury Award Winner will win an additional $10,000.

(D) Odds of Winning: The odds of winning the Purpose Prize Contest depend on the number of eligible applications received, and the AARP Reviewers and/or Jurors’ evaluation of said entries.

Applicants need not be an AARP member in order to enter and/or win. Being an AARP member will not increase your chance or odds of winning.


Prize Limit: An individual, including a member of his/her household, regardless of email address used, may only win one (1) prize throughout the Promotion Period. Each Winner will receive the prize within 45 days of having been confirmed as a Winner. Prizes are not transferable or substitutable except by Sponsor with one of equal or greater value. Sponsor is not responsible for any Winner’s inability to utilize her/his prize.

Note: All taxes associated with the acceptance and/or uses of cash awarded are the sole responsibility of individual Winners and their Founded Non-Profits. Cash awarded will be reported by AARP to the IRS as AARP deems necessary according to applicable law. It is further the policy of AARP that all AARP Purpose Prize Winners and Founded Non-profits be advised to consult with their own tax professionals and/or legal counsel to ascertain the tax impact of the Founded Non-Profits receiving the cash awards.

All federal, state and local taxes are solely the responsibility of each Winner and their Founded Non-Profits.

Additionally, at the sole discretion of the Sponsor, disqualification, forfeiture and the selection of an alternate Winner may result from any of the following: (a) a potential Winner’s failure, upon request, to provide Sponsor with satisfactory proof of age, identity, residency, and/or eligibility; (b) a potential Winner’s failure to accept or utilize the prize as provided herein; or (c) any other non-compliance, as determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion, with the Official Rules.

6. LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: Sponsor & Others are not responsible for interrupted or unavailable network server or other connections; for miscommunications; failed telephone, computer or electronic transmissions; for jumbled, scrambled or misdirected entries or transmissions; for phone, electrical, network, technology or computer hardware or software or program malfunctions, failures or difficulties; or any other errors, omissions, interruptions, or deletions of any kind, whether human, mechanical or electronic; or for non-receipt of any entry regardless of the cause of it not being properly received by Sponsor. Sponsor & Others are not responsible for illegible, unintelligible, late, lost or stolen entries; for incorrect or inaccurate entry information, whether caused by Internet users or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Promotion; or for any technical, printing or human errors which may occur in the receipt, non-receipt or processing of any entries in the Promotion. In no event will Sponsor award more Prizes than are stated in these Official Rules. Persons found tampering with or abusing any aspect of the Promotion, as solely determined by Sponsor, will be disqualified and may be subject to prosecution. Any person attempting to enter using multiple email addresses, multiple identities or any other device or artifice to enter multiple times or to interfere with the proper play of the Promotion will be disqualified from participation in the Promotion. If, in the judgment of Sponsor, the Promotion is compromised by viruses, bugs, non-authorized human intervention or other causes beyond the control of Sponsor, which may corrupt the administration, security, fairness or proper play of the Promotion, Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify, discontinue, suspend or terminate the Promotion and proceed to select potential Round Winners in a manner it deems fair and reasonable.


7. CANCELATION: Sponsor reserves the right to cancel, suspend and/or modify the Promotion or any part of it, if any fraud, technical failures, virus, human error, tampering or any other factor impairs the integrity or proper functioning of the Promotion, as determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. In such event, Sponsor reserves the right to award the prizes from among the eligible entries or plays received up to the time of the impairment. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to disqualify any individual it finds to be tampering with the entry process or the operation of the or to be acting in violation of the Official Rules of this or any other promotion or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner. Any attempt by any person to deliberately undermine the legitimate operation of the Promotion may be a violation of criminal and civil law, and, should such an attempt be made, Sponsor reserves the right to seek damages from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. Sponsor’s failure to enforce any term of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision.

8. PRIVACY POLICY: Any personally identifiable information collected during an Applicant’s participation in the Promotion will be collected by Sponsor and used by Sponsor in accordance with Sponsor's Privacy Policy as such is stated at aarp.org/privacypolicy. Sponsor will not share the nominators’ name or contact information with any nominee or with the general public unless required by law or a court of competent jurisdiction.

9. PUBLICITY RIGHTS: By accepting a prize, each Winner agrees to allow Sponsor and/or Sponsor's designees the perpetual right to use his/her entry, name, biographical information, photos, videos and/or likeness, and statements for promotion, trade, commercial, advertising and publicity purposes, at any time or times, in all media now known or hereafter discovered, worldwide, including but not limited to on the World Wide Web and Internet, without notice, review or approval and without additional compensation except where prohibited by law.

10. GOVERNING LAW: Issues concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules shall be governed by the laws of the District of Columbia, without regard to the conflicts of law provisions.

11. RELEASE: By participating, each Applicant and their Founded Organizations releases and agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Sponsor & Others from and against any and all costs, claims, damages, or any other injury, whether due to negligence or otherwise, to person(s) or property (including, without limitation, death or violation of any personal rights, such as violation of right of publicity/privacy, libel, or slander), due in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, to participation in the Promotion, or arising out of the receipt, use or misuse, or enjoyment of any Prize.

12. GENERAL: By entering the Promotion, Applicants agree to abide and to be bound by these Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsor, which shall be final in all matters pertaining to this Promotion. All entries become property of Sponsor and will not be returned. Void outside of the fifty (50) United States/District of Columbia and wherever prohibited or restricted by law. All federal, state and local laws and regulations apply.

13. In the event that a set of two (2) co-founders win jointly, all the above terms and conditions apply to both recipients.

14. WINNER’S LIST: To obtain the names of the Winners, send a properly stamped, self-addressed envelope, by December 31, 2024, to AARP Purpose Prize Winners’ List, A10-125c, 601 E Street, NW, Washington, DC 20049.

SPONSOR: AARP, 601 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20049

© 2023 AARP

AARP and Purpose Prize are registered trademark of AARP Non-Profit Corporation, D.C. These Official Rules may not be reproduced or reprinted in part or in their entirety without the express prior written permission of AARP.