If you are an adult currently living in the U.S. there’s a thirty percent chance that you are also a grandparent. And the lingering recession has greatly increased the probability that you also are raising one or more grandchildren. That’s one of the findings of the Brookdale Grandparent Caregiver Information Project, based at the University of California at Berkeley’s Center on Aging.
Grandparent grandchild-rearing has grown by fifty percent
In the last decade, their research shows that grandparent grandchild-rearing has grown by fifty percent. And so has other stresses, such as the challenges of balancing the needs of their aging parents as well as the pressures of lost jobs and shrinking portfolios.
For some families, it creates a perfect storm of stress and disruption. Which is why we think it is so important that the Vallejo community knows about a free Grandparents Raising Grandchildren support group that meets in Vallejo once a month. Coordinated by the very resourceful and engaging Terry Ann Stephen, this group has become a safe place for grandparents to share their frustrations and joys with folks who understand their challenges.
Grandparents need to be at least 55 years old
This program is sponsored by the Area Agency on Aging/Family Caregiver Support Program, which is in turn funded by Title III E of the Older Americans Act (with a grant from the California Deparment of Aging). The only requirements are that the caregiver must be a relative who is at least 55 years old and their grandkids must be under age 18, or an individual (of any age) with a disability.
Recently we had the opportunity to sit down with Stephens. We wanted to know what newcomers can expect to gain from this support group. So don’t leave this page with watching this informative video (to the left of this text)
The Grandparents Raising Grandchildren support group meets at 5:30PM every 4th Wednesday of the month at: First Baptist Church, 2025 Sonoma Blvd, Vallejo.
For more information, contact Terry Ann Steffen, Family Caregiver Support Program Coordinator, at (707) 644-6612, ext. 13
Stay tuned for a future posting where Stephens shares information about other services provided by their Family Caregiver Support Program. If you are not already a subscriber to the Vallejo Community Issues Examiner blog, hit that Subscribe button above (it’s free of charge!) and you will receive a free email alert everytime we publish a new posting.