Tuesday, August 03, 2010
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Community Action Corner
Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois on the Web

Wanted: foster grandparents

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[August 03, 2010]  Are you 55 or over? Love children? Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois is looking for foster grandparents. As children prepare for "back to school," it's also time to sign up for the Foster Grandparent program.

Foster grandparents are low-income seniors who are matched with children to provide individual assistance and love to children in schools, day cares and Head Start centers. Foster grandparents provide supportive relationships, friendship, love, encouragement, guidance, stability and emotional support, as well as assist teachers with a variety of activities. Foster grandparents also listen, talk, sing, assist in feedings, tutor and promote literacy through reading and being read to by children.

The Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois coordinates the program in DeWitt, Fulton, Logan, Macon, Mason, Menard and Piatt counties.

Previously individuals had to be 60 and older to participate in the program, but the age has been lowered to 55. The income eligibility has also been raised to 200 percent of the poverty level. Participants in the program earn a tax-free stipend, lunches, travel reimbursement, paid vacation and sick leave, and 13 paid holidays.

Annually, the foster grandparents are recognized at a Thanksgiving luncheon and recognition banquet. The biggest reward comes from giving help to the children and seeing their improvement.

Interested individuals should call Paula Gregg at 217-732-2159, ext. 237, to find out more information. Any day cares, school districts and preschools are also encouraged to contact Gregg to become a site for foster grandparents. There is no cost to be a site.

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The Community Action Foster Grandparent program has been active in the community for 44 years. Lots of children in the community have benefited from the foster grandmas and grandpas and there are opportunities available now.

For more information about Community Action, visit www.capcil.org.

(See letter from a child who loved the foster grandma she had at school.)

[Text from file received from Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois]

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