How Can We Celebrate (and Support) Grandparents?

Today’s Grandparent’s Day – a day which, believe it or not, did not just start as a Hallmark card holiday but actually has real roots in valuing the role grandparents play for children.

I wrote about this last year for at my organization’s blog, and it’s a huge piece of the

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GaGa/Kieran bonding on board an Irish tour boat

work I am doing around extended family engagement – grandparents (and step-grandparents, and honorary grandparents) are among the most widely acknowledged family members playing a role in children’s lives.

It’s also a role I think about every day, as grandparents on mine and my husband’s side make our daily life with K possible – and it’s an absolute treasure to watch K develop a loving relationship.

You can read more on grandparent’s as a policy issue here:

 

We can work to embrace two-generation strategies in our programs for families – and then push further to ask how we can make these three- and four-generation strategies, as Senior ICS Fellow Janice Gruendel did in a recent presentation on opportunities for extended family involvement in evidence-based home-visiting models.

We can learn more about opportunities to fully include “grandfamilies” in our safety net programs, as highlighted by Generations United.

We can continue working to improve access to early care and education programs, so families have more quality choices for young children, which can complement nurturing care from grandparents.

We can continue to support research and resources to ensure quality of life for seniors and foster healthy intergenerational relationships.

 

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