for the wider family raising children
Grandparents Plus has been funded by the Big Lottery Fund to develop the Grandparents Plus Support Network for the wider family raising children.
Across the country, it is estimated that 200,000 grandparents and other family members are raising children who cannot live with their parents. This may be because of parental illness or disability, drug or alcohol misuse, imprisonment, bereavement or relationship breakdown. These kinship carers ensure that children stay within their families, providing the essential care, love and support they need. However, the carers themselves can often feel isolated and stigmatised, ignored by government policy and practice.
The Grandparents Plus Support Network brings together grandparents who are raising their grandchildren and other kinship carers to give them a voice, to share experiences, to find solutions and to tell government, children’s services, the NHS, drug and alcohol agencies and others what needs to change.
We do this by running local, regional and national events for all kinship carers, through our newsletter Kinship First (formerly Grandparents First), through this website, and by joining forces with other groups to make our voice heard. We can also put carers in touch with established support groups.
We are also developing two brand new services:
this year we began offering Parenting Workshops for kinship carers at our regional events and we plan to launch a Befriending Service later this year, which will pair up kinship carers with each other so they feel less isolated.
We carry out a yearly survey of our Network, to read the findings from this year and previous years click here.
Family and friends care statutory guidance
We’ve produced a handy checklist of 10 questions to ask your local authority about the guidance for family and friends care. You can download a copy here.
Remember to let us know how you get on! Contact Alison, our Support Network Manager, here.
You can download a full copy of the guidance here.