Do you remember when you were younger and you longed for the times you got to visit your grandparents? Do you remember the great storytellers they were? You always left wanting more. The joy you felt and the love that was shared made you feel like you were some famous rock star. Grandparents hold a very special place in the hearts of many. The role they play is very important. The support they provide to parents shows the foundation that families are built on.
Studies indicate when grandparents are involved in their grandchildren’s daily lives, the children are more social and more involved in school. I think their relationships with grandparents help them to interact with adults. They are also more likely to care and show compassion for people outside their immediate circle of friends and family.
Grandparents offer a broader insight on life. Their years bring wisdom, much patience and time. We all want to think that we are providing our children the best guidance and giving the best advice to help them as they grow up. For me personally, there are times I give my daughter advice and it’s not received well. However, her grandparents can give the same advice, and she gets it immediately.
Some grandparents also have a different yet difficult role. In some occasions, they have the task of raising their grandchildren. This job is not an easy task, and it can sometime play a major role in their health. But there is help; they don’t have to do it alone.
If you are a grandparent raising your grandchildren, you are not alone. There are approximately 2.5 million grandparents in the US who are solely responsible for the basic needs of their grandchildren. In Cumberland County, 3,783 grandparents are raising their grandchildren.
Having someone who understands what you are going through can make a world of difference. The Partnership for Children of Cumberland County hosts a Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Group just for this reason. The support group meets monthly and provides a way for grandparents to share stories and tips, spend time with others who are in similar situations, and learn about services available in the community. There is also tutoring for the grandchildren and continuing education trainings for the grandparents. However, you must be an active member to take advantage of these different resources.
The program is funded by a grant from the Mid-Carolina Area Agency on Aging. To learn more about the Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Group, contact the Partnership’s Family Support Caseworkers at (910) 867-9700.
Grandparents are very important in our lives; they provide such value and sense of determination to the entire family. How great it is to have such a gift of wonderful grandparents and to get advice from the roots of the family tree!
We celebrate the sacrifice that was made and the guidance given by grandparents. If you are lucky enough to still have them around share your continued love with them this Grandparents Day on September 10th. Let them know the special place they hold in your heart, not only on this day but forever.
- Grandparents Magazine – www.grandparentsmagazine.net. Articles, craft ideas, product reviews, book reviews, and more
- Grandparents.com – www.grandparents.com. Activities, recipes, articles, and advice
- USA.gov: Grandparents Raising Grandchildren –www.usa.gov/Topics/Grandparents.shtml. Links to resources for grandparents raising grandchildren
- AARP Grandparent Information Center – www.aarp.org/families/grandparents. Wide variety of resources for grandparents raising grandchildren
All of these books are available in the Eva L. Hansen Resource Lending Library located within the PFC Family Resource Center.
- Grandparents as Parents: A Survival Guide for Raising A Second Family by Sylvie Toledo
- Raising our Children’s Children by Deborah Doucette-Dudman
- To Grandma’s House, We Stay by Sally Houtman
- Grand parenting in a Changing World by Eda LeShan
- Child Advocacy Center: (910) 486-9700
- Cumberland County Department of Social Services: (910) 323-1540
- Cumberland County Health Department: (910) 433-3600
- CC Coordinating Council on Older Adults: (910) 484-0111
- Legal Aid: (910) 483-0400
- Tokay Senior Fitness Center: (910) 488-6120
- Mid Carolina Area on Aging: (910) 323-4191
- Partnership for Children of Cumberland County: (910) 867-9700
Division Administrator for Provider Services
Partnership for Children of Cumberland County