Raising children is not an easy task, but an ever-growing segment of society is in its second round of doing so.
At a time in their life when retirement means taking it easy, grandparents sometimes take on the responsibility of raising their grandchildren. In West Virginia 7 percent of children are being raised by grandparents.
Family Resource Network in Hancock County and located in Chester, is offering a Healthy Grandfamilies program, a free initiative to provide information and resources to grandparents who are raising one or more grandchildren.
Emilee Jarrell of FRN is the Case Manager for the program. She said the number one reason grandparents are caring for their grandchildren are parents who are addicted to drugs with the second being incarceration. Child Protective Services may determine whether the parents are unfit or unable to care for children. She said parents are sometimes uninterested and some are homeless and unable to provide a place for their child to live. While grandparents may have had experience raising children, the environment they now find themselves and their grandchildren in has changed drastically.
Jarrell meets with grandparents to ensure they are given the support and resources they need to succeed. She said a variety of topics are covered including:
Legal Aid and Kinship Care.
Navigating the School system.
Stress and stress management
Family relationship (Funds available)
Healthcare, dental care, etc.
If you, or someone you know, could benefit from the services offered through the Healthy Grandparents program contact Jarrell at (304)748-7850, ext. 1003.