First Things First applauds grandparents who are raising Arizona’s next generation

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
Celebrating grandparents who are raising their grandchildren.

Celebrating grandparents who are raising their grandchildren.

CASA GRANDE (August, 2016) – The first Sunday after Labor Day is recognized as Grandparents’ Day in the United States. This year, the day falls on Sept. 11. As the nation celebrates Grandparents’ Day, First Things First applauds those grandparents who are parenting a second time around.

  Earlier this year, the Arizona Legislature proclaimed September as Grandfamily/Kinship Care Month, a time to recognize grandparents and other family members raising children who cannot be cared for by their own parents. State Senator Debbie Lesko sponsored the bill.

In Arizona, 14 percent of Arizona children ages 0 to 5 live with grandparents, compared to 12 percent nationally. Of those 14 percent, 30 percent of these households have no parent of the child present, meaning grandparents are responsible for most of the basic needs of children living with them.

  For many grandparents, it can be challenging when it has been decades since they cared for young children. So much has been learned about brain development and the impact of early experiences. Now we know that about 90 percent of a child’s brain develops before age 5. More and more evidence shows quality early interactions are crucial for a young child’s success in school and later in life.

  FTF provides funding for various programs that are having positive impacts on grandparents and Arizona’s children. In Pinal County, FTF Pinal Region funds the United Way of Pinal County Friend, Family & Neighbor (FFN) Caregivers Outreach Assistance Project, which offers support to grandparents raising and/or caring for their grandchildren. Grandparents can attend free monthly trainings and networking events on topics such as early literacy, the importance of play to a child’s learning and how to deal with challenging behaviors. For more information about the FFN program, call 520-836-0736, ext. 13.

  Shirley Petty, a grandmother, participated in the San Tan Valley program for many years. Her granddaughter recently started kindergarten.

  “My granddaughter is as smart as a whip and she would not be where she is emotionally, academically or physically if it were not for the FFN monthly meetings,” Petty said. “I learned a wealth of up-to-date knowledge and information. After all, my children are grown and it was many years since I cared for a little one.”

  FTF also provides two statewide resources that can provide advice and support to grandparents raising their grandkids. The Birth to 5 Helpline (1-877-705-KIDS) is a free program and open to all Arizona families, with young children ages birth to 5, looking for the latest child development information from experts in the field.

  Then there’s the Arizona Parent Kit, which is given to families of newborns when they leave the hospital or available for check-out at many libraries, each kit includes: DVDs on everything from challenging behaviors to choosing child care, a book to encourage daily reading with infants and a list of community resources.

  Supporting grandparents in their efforts to raise the next generation will help create a strong foundation of learning, growth and success for all children.

ftf-logo

About First Things First

First Things First is a voter-created, statewide organization that funds early education and health programs to help kids be successful once they enter kindergarten. Decisions about how those funds are spent are made by local councils staffed by community volunteers. To learn more, visit FirstThingsFirst.org.

Staff (4294 Posts)

There are news or informational items frequently written by staff or submitted to the Copper Basin News, San Manuel Miner, Superior Sun, Pinal Nugget or Oracle Towne Crier for inclusion in our print or digital products. These items are not credited with an author.


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
Facebooktwitterby feather

Comments are closed.

  • Additional Stories

    Third Trip to State Semis is Super(ior)

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      The Superior football team reached the 1A State Championship Semifinal game for the third-consecutive year and the third time […]


    In Your Biz: Triplett Mountain Communications

    November 13th, 2017
    by

    How we communicate has changes over the years. Many will still remember a party line phone system, and some may […]


    Future is bright for young Miners’ X-Country team

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      The 2017 San Manuel cross-country team consists of 13 members – five boys and eight girls – with only […]


    Miner Swimmers compete at State Championship Swim Meet

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      The Division III High School State Championship Swim Meet was held at the Phoenix Country Day  Aquatic Center in […]


  • Additional Stories

    Student Rotarians named at San Manuel High School

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      SaddleBrooke Rotary has named three San Manuel High School girls Student Rotarians for the month of October and honored […]


    Oracle Union Church to host annual community breakfast, bake & rummage sale and raffle

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      Saturday, Nov. 18, is the Oracle Union Church Community Breakfast from 8-11 a.m.  The menu includes biscuits with sausage […]


    Poetry reading held at Oracle State Park

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      Heidi Elizabeth Blankenship hiked the Arizona Trail from Mexico to Utah.   Inspired by the natural beauty of the […]


    San Manuel High School band is back and performing

    November 13th, 2017
    by

      Yay! The band is back!   Under the direction of Miss Laura Galbus, the San Manuel High School marching […]


  • Copperarea

  • [Advertisement.]
  • [Advertisement.]
  • [Advertisement.]
  • Southeast Valley Ledger