Relative Experience Project

Grandparents Plus, together with two other leading family charities, Family Lives and the Family and Childcare Trust are supporting kinship carers through the Relative Experience Project.

Funded by the Big Lottery Fund Silver Dreams Fund, The Relative Experience Project can support kinship carers with the following:

Volunteer befriending service
“What the befriender offers is someone to offload on, someone who will listen in a non-judgemental way and who will help the kinship carer to find the confidence to cope with the problems they face. On a practical level they also offer basic information, including the Kinship Care Guide and referrals to our advice service and other local and national sources of help.”

Having a befriender has been life saving for me” – grandmother supported by the project.

Kinship Care Support Group
We support kinship carers in organising support groups where members can share information, offload and plan activities together. Get in touch to find out if there is a support group in your area.

Campaigning for Change
We want to support kinship carers in speaking out – to raise awareness and challenge policy and practice where needed


Yvonne Brown, Relative Experience Administrator, attending the Newcastle Time to Change event in October


As a result of the success of the pilot we are delighted to confirm that the project has secured scale-up funding from the Big Lottery Fund Silver Dreams Fund for the next three years.  You can read the press release here. This means we will be able to extend the project across the North East, work with service providers to improve practice and embed the work and help many more kinship carers.

If you live in the North East and would be interested in getting involved in the project please contact the Project Manager, Cath Halse on 0191 200 5034 or email

You can read more about the project at our dedicated blog RelativeExperience

Silver Dreams & Partners Logo update april 2014