Imagine, you are sitting in your living room, munching cookies, cuddled in a fuzzy blanket and a news story grabs your attention. You say to yourself: wow am I glad that’s not me. And then days later you realize.. it’s not a movie or a news story. It’s MY life!
I discovered that Rhode Island had 13,000 and 2.5 million children across the country being cared for by grandparents or grandfamilies; mostly due to the opioid crisis .I was now part of this fuzzy demographic of caregivers. I felt like I just entered a ‘child welfare twilight zone where pretty much time stood still’. I began researching, googling and calling.
Suddenly, with little notice I was parenting again; navigating the child welfare system, juggling childcare, work, learning about substance use disorder while assimilating to new family dynamics was challenging. There were few resources; that was my ‘aha’ moment and where the vision for ‘Grands Flourish’ was born.
I envisioned a grandparent’s hub, a place where grandparents can connect to community, share their stories, engage in support groups, learn about resources and celebrate successes.
Talk about connecting… just he other day I randomly selected a florist in Florida and the individual I was speaking said “you know, I was raised by my grandmother she actually owns this flower store” WOW ! Warmly – Magdalena-