Date of Award

January 2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Geography & Geographic Information Science

First Advisor

Devon Hansen


The purpose of this study was to examine the needs of a Neighbors Helping Neighbors (NHN) Program to help the elderly successfully age-in-place in the Near Southside Neighborhood (NSS) in Grand Forks, North Dakota. As aging becomes increasingly an issue of concern, establishing a NHN Program in the NSS would help the elderly remain independent in their own home and community. The NHN Program is a specialized program designed to provide aging services to those who are in need through community engagement. Through surveys, data was collected in the Grand Forks Area and the NSS. The first survey was conducted at the Grand Forks Senior Center to gather information on what aging services are important to help seniors in the Grand Forks Area. The second survey, distributed by mail, was sent to the residents of the NSS. This survey produced a variety of information including; the desire to start a program to help the seniors; what services are necessary; what skills does the neighborhood possess; and interest level of volunteering. These data are the core for the needs assessment to help the elderly in the NSS. It is anticipated that this study will help people understand the need for a NHN Program and will promote community engagement between neighbors and residents within the NSS. Consequently, the NSS will have a chance to review the research and findings to assess whether or not implementation of the NHN Program is feasible.