Kinship care program offers information and support to grandparents, others who are raising another’s child

A video discussion group meets each Monday evening in September to discuss the challenges facing those who raise another’s child. How do you balance your needs with those of the kids? Where to turn for help? You are not alone, others want to lighten your load.


Kinship Care describes when a family member, often a grandparent, raises another’s’ child. Photo courtesy


Kinship Care is a term used to describe when family members care for children whose parents for whatever reason cannot do so. Often is because the children have been separated from their parents because of drug or alcohol abuse.


“That’s a good sign of course, because what that means is that families are continuing to be engaged when their adult children are not able to function adequately to parent so the children are staying within their families. So this is good.”


That’s Sandra Jackson-Collins a long-time local behavior health provider. She spoke during a recent Talk of the Rock program here on KMXT.


“But as a grandparent myself, I can’t imagine doing it. I’m old, and it would be hard to chase around a bunch of little kids 24/7. So I have the utmost respect for especially the grandparents.”


Kinship Care is the subject of an every-Monday-evening event being held at the Marion Center. A video and discussion each week is designed to help those caring for other’s children. Topics will include hope and denial, as well as questions from caregivers.

Jackson-Collins says caregivers often suffer a range of emotions, but guilt is common, and makes the demands of kinship care that much harder.


“But the point is we have to lean on each other, and for grandparents to try to struggle alone. If guilt is attached to it, that’s an incredible burden that they must bear by themselves. So in part, it may be the guilt associated with having a child that’s addicted, it may be the guilt that comes along with being too tired to do the job the way you think they deserve. It may be guilt that comes along with resenting that you don’t get to follow through with your retirement plans that you and your partner might have made. So there are lots of places the guilt may stem from. But whatever it is, it’s okay to feel that and it’s okay to talk about it, because there is no shame attached to any of those things.


Guilt is the subject of tonight’s video designed to provide support to local family members caring for another’s children. It is one of a series of Monday night events during September.

The videos and a facilitated discussion are shown at the Marian Center behind St. Mary’s. The program runs from 6:30 to 8:30. For more information call Heather at 512-6762.



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