Kentucky Grandparent

Posted on 12/08/20 by Scott Wegenast

Kentucky Grandparents!

There are more than 70 million grandparents in the US and the numbers continue growing. In one AARP survey of grandparents, 73% report “they enjoy it.” Naturally, many of us are missing our grandchildren. Grandparents often are major figures in the lives of their grandchildren. And frequently, grandparents are a source of support for their adult children as they enter the parenting stage.

Across the country, multigenerational living situations — whether spurred by the coronavirus pandemic or already in place — are making grandparents starring figures in family life. They're caring for grandchildren as parents work from home, helping with remote education, doing chores like cooking and yard work, and reading bedtime stories. The result is often a deeper relationship with members of the household.

According to AARP, older adults are benefitting from this multigenerational living environment, too. Research has shown that seniors who provide some care for their grandchildren had a 37 percent lower risk of death over a 20-year period, compared with those who didn't or older adults who weren't grandparents.

Bottomline – The grandparent-grandchild bond is more important than ever and helps everyone in the family.

Collectively grandparents spend a total of $179 billion per year on their grandchildren, approximately $2,562 per grandparent. Those dollars are going toward a variety of expenses and spending choices, the survey found, from gifts to education and day-to-day costs.

AARP Kentucky recently had a virtual session with grandparents. Volunteers shared some ways grandparents and grandkids can stay connected virtually:

KY-Grandparenting_2020

AARP Kentucky volunteers shared their ideas to helping grandparents and grandchildren stay connected virtually.

  • Read a bedtime story
  • Drawing contest
  • Matching Lego sets
  • Arts and Crafts
  • Stargazing
  • Story Telling
  • Scavenger Hunts
  • Family Recipes
  • Virtual Spa Day
  • Family History Project

In Kentucky, local resources for grandparents raising grandchildren are available from the Kinship Families - Coalition of Kentucky.
The Kentucky Grandparent and Relative Caregiver Handbook (pdf)
A Caregiver’s Guide created by Kinship Families Coalition of Kentucky in collaboration with the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Office (September 2020)

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Find information about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in your state. CDC information is available at cdc.gov/coronavirus; additional AARP information and resources are at aarp.org/coronavirus. En español, visite aarp.org/elcoronavirus.

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