(W): 312-663-3520 X823
(C): 312-806-4066

Recognizing and Supporting Grandparents as Parents

CHICAGO, IL, September 30, 2013 – Many of us celebrate our parents in May or June. But for over 5.4 million individuals, that appreciation comes in September – Grandparent’s Month – as the time to recognize the men and women who raise them; and with September coming to a close, we would like to express our appreciation for them as well.

According to the Population Reference Bureau, the rate of grandparents raising children has more than doubled since 1970, increasing from 3%, to 7% in 2010. As the number of children being raised in “grandfamilies” continues to grow, so does the importance of our communities to support these grandparents in ways that most assist their unique situation.

Grandparents are impacted differently than other parents including increasing health costs due to advancing age and fixed or a lower monthly income due to retirement. Similarly, children who come to live with their grandparents often face a new environment, away from friends and familiar faces, even if only a few blocks away, a situation that may result in isolation or bullying.

In situations such as these, support from the community can make all of the difference. Neighbors and friends can help these new-again parents by doing simple things such as offering to babysit which gives these grandparents well deserved respite, bringing home-cooked meals, combining grandparent errands with their own, or simply by taking the time to express our gratitude for the important decision they have made.

For those who are grandparents themselves, supporting peers who are raising children can be done in a different but equally important way. Offering to start or lead a grandparent-specific support group can give people a chance to not only sit down with others who are in a similar situation, but share tips and stories in a group setting that can be beneficial to the social and mental health for grandparents.

Simply being around like-minded people can be a huge help to grandparents by further building their support system of friends and confidants, and by helping children open the door to friendships with other nearby children. For other ideas specific to grandparents, GRAND Magazine, a magazine that is a good friend and partner to Prevent Child Abuse America, contains a wealth of information and support for grandparents nationwide.

But even if you don’t know a grandparent in need directly, you can still play a role in helping these families by volunteering at daycare programs or pre- and post-school programs that give grandparents who are still working a safe-place to leave the children while they are out providing for their family. It is also important that community members ensure grandparents get access to the same community services available to other parents. In many ways the wisdom and experience of our grandparents is a gift and resource they are happy to share with others.

Grandparents who are raising children again do so with joy and grace, but that doesn’t mean a little help would go unappreciated. So this September, I encourage people to not only recognize the important job that many grandparents have undertaken, but also to take their lessons of love and generosity and pass it on in our own special manner.

Together we can support not only the men and women raising their grandchildren, but also the healthy development of children everywhere.



Find your local chapter

Got questions?
Use these resources
to find your statewide chapter.

us map-sm

Current news

Prevent Child Abuse America, its VA and MD Chapters to Celebrate Great Childhoods at ‘National Pinwheel Garden’ on National Mall

Prevent Child Abuse America, its VA and MD Chapters to Celebrate Great Childhoods at ‘National Pinwheel Garden’on National Mall

General Federation of Women’s Clubs, Sigma Delta Tau,  Kappa Delta and Chartwells K12 to Partner on October 13th event

CHICAGO, IL October 7, 2015 – On Tuesday, October 13, Prevent Child Abuse America and its Virginia and Maryland chapters will celebrate the great childhoods that all children deserve with a “National Pinwheel Garden” at 11:00am ET near the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The pinwheel, derived from Prevent Child Abuse America’s Pinwheels for Prevention® campaign, is the symbol for child abuse prevention, introduced by the organization nationally in 2008.

The public and members of event partners General Federation of Women’s Clubs, Sigma Delta Tau, Kappa Delta and Chartwells K12 are being invited to celebrate the people who helped them enjoy great childhoods by having pinwheels planted in their honor in the National Pinwheel Garden.

Individuals can purchase and dedicate pinwheels at through Monday, October 12. On Tuesday, October 13, the pinwheels will be planted on the National Mall.

“The pinwheel allows us to engage people in a new way,” said Prevent Child Abuse America President and CEO James M. Hmurovich. “It provides us with an engaging device to move beyond merely making people aware of child abuse prevention, but motivating them to take action on its behalf. From acts big and small, from providing busy parents with a break to signing onto letters to Congress, each of us can, and must, play a role in ensuring great childhoods for our nation’s children. This event in the nation’s capital is one more way to convey that message to the country.”

The National Pinwheel Garden is part of a nationwide series of pinwheel-themed events staged by Prevent Child Abuse America and its 50 state chapters throughout the year to promote the actions we can all take to help ensure great childhoods for all children. 

Jared Fogle and the Roles We Can All Play in the Lives of Children

Jared Fogle and the Roles We Can All Play in the Lives of Children

CHICAGO, IL, August 21, 2015 – When we hear stories like that about former Subway spokesperson Jared Fogle who has been charged with child pornography and child prostitution, it can be shocking. It can cause confusion. It can cause anger. And these reactions make sense.

However, we can’t allow these reactions to prevent us from taking action, because at Prevent Child Abuse America we know – and the research shows – that there are steps that each of us can take that can help prevent a situation like this from happening in the future.

At Prevent Child Abuse America we believe that all children deserve great childhoods because our children are our future. This seems like such a simple sentiment, but it drives our work every day, because it speaks to the many things that we want for our children – all children – and our nation: healthy, productive adults who have a positive impact on the communities they live in.

We’re sure that you want that too, but at the same time recognize that it is often difficult to act without knowing what to do. In light of this story, we’ve compiled some ideas on how you can make a difference in the lives of children and families in your community, and help you turn your natural feelings of anger or confusion into positive and proactive steps that can make a difference.

For parents, please note that the children in this story appear to have been accessed on-line, and so parents, you must be conscientious in monitoring your children’s on-line use. To quote the Six Pillars for Prevention from National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation, “Today’s children and youth have never known a world that is not filled with technology. Since technology is now an integral part of all our daily lives, parents must be diligent in who can access our children and youth.”

For ideas about how to do this, you can use resources like “A Parent’s Guide to Internet Safety” from the FBI.

For our communities, we must work together to end the demand for children as sexual commodities. Rather than responding after the harm and focusing on how to reduce risk for potential victims, we have to identify factors that feed demand for children to be viewed as sexual objects in mainstream media, takes away barriers to sexually abusing/exploiting children, makes it easier to access child sexual abuse images or children/teens depictions in pornography and/or children to buy to sexually exploit.

And for our legal system, we must attend to child victims of sex trafficking as victims, not sex workers. Children, by definition are developmentally incapable of giving consent, even if they think they did. They are victims and deserve to be treated as such. The adults who exploited them must be held accountable and the children offered the help they deserve.

On this final point, we want to be clear: we should not be prosecuting kids who are victims, and many states have passed Safe Harbor laws to avoid doing just that. You can learn more about these laws at the American Bar Association.

“As we work at Prevent Child Abuse America to prevent the abuse and neglect of children before it can ever occur,” said James M. Hmurovich, President & CEO, Prevent Child Abuse America, “we look at strategies that can involve everyone from individuals and families to communities and law makers. This troubling story of Jared Fogle has lessons for all of these areas, and in all of these areas there are roles we can, and must, play.”

Announcing Anita Odom as Senior Director of Chapter Services

Announcing Anita Odom as the Senior Director of Chapter Services

Prevent Child Abuse America is pleased to announce the addition of Anita Odom to The National Office Team beginning September 14, 2015. She will assume the responsibilities of the Senior Director of Chapter Services.

Anita is a well-known and respected member of our organization having served as the Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Florida for the past four years. Thanks to her work with the Ounce of Prevention Fund and the Prevent Child Abuse chapter in Florida, Anita is experienced and knowledgeable of chapter network operations. Her “can-do” attitude will serve all of us well in this new role.

Anita is a graduate of Janus Pannonius University in Hungary, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.A. in Educational Administration. She is also a graduate of Florida State University, Cum Laude, with a B.S. in Sociology. Prior to beginning her career with the Ounce of Prevention Fund in 2004, Anita worked as a Program Assistant and then Program Coordinator for the National Philharmonie in Hungary.

In addition to serving as the Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Florida, Anita is also familiar with our Healthy Families America program thanks to her time working as the Healthy Families Plus Program Coordinator in Florida from September 2006 to September 2011.

Please join me in welcoming Anita to the Prevent Child Abuse America National Office. Anita can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Newsletter Sign-up

healthy families-icn


English French German Italian Portuguese Russian Spanish