For Community Partners

CAARN facilitates connections between community partners and academic researchers to develop evidence-based healthy aging programs.  These partnerships bring the expertise of academic researchers together with the population-specific knowledge of community organizations [such as aging offices and Aging & Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs)] to identify barriers to healthy aging and conduct research into interventions that can better support older people in their homes and communities. 


If you have an aging need in your community or would like to work to improve the health of older adults in your community, CAARN will facilitate the process of taking a healthy aging approach and turning it into an evidence-based program.


CAARN Research Focus Areas:

While CAARN is interested in all facets of healthy aging, we have developed a focus in several key areas that have been identified as playing a major role in the well-being of older people and in the escalating cost of health care:

  • Falls Prevention
  • Physical Activity and Musculoskeletal Health
  • Dementia
  • Medication Management
  • Mental Health
  • Chronic Disease Managment


CAARN provides the following services:

  • Education: CAARN will do training and provide information and resources on academic and community topics related to healthy aging.
  • Partnership Facilitation: The Community Research Associate (CRA) acts as a facilitator for the partnership and research process.
  • Funding: CAARN can assist academic partners in securing funding for pilot studies.
  • Resources: CAARN's Program Developer is available to assist with the design and tailoring of behavioral interventions for community settings. CAARN assists with accessing other resources available through the University of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Aging Network.


Steps in becoming a community partner:

  1. Contact is made through Shannon Myers, Community Research Specialist.

  2. CRA meets with community partner to discuss project possibilities and assess community and agency interests, needs, and barriers. CRA provides information on potential academic partners.

  3. CRA matches interests, feasibility, and target population with a potential academic partner.

  4. Potential partners (academic and community) have an initial meeting facilitated by CAARN staff, and discussions begin as a team.

  5. Research questions and project direction decided on as a team.

  6. Project proposal written and submitted.

  7. If not funded, CAARN works with the team to find another funding source and/or adjust the proposal.