STATEMENT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: BEN TANZER
(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

Mayor Rahm Emanuel helps turn Chicago's Navy Pier into a Big Pinwheel Garden

 
Mayor Rahm Emanuel and 41st Ward Alderman Mary O'Connor to join Prevent Child Abuse America and its Illinois Chapter in turning Gateway Park at Navy Pier into Big Pinwheel Garden

Chicago event highlights month-long series of activities nationwide calling people to action in support of healthy starts for kids throughout April’s Child Abuse Prevention Month

APRIL 16, 2014 (Chicago, IL) – Mayor Rahm Emanuel and 41st Ward Alderman Mary O’Connor will join Prevent Child Abuse America and Prevent Child Abuse Illinois in turning Chicago’s Gateway Park at Navy Pier into a "Big Pinwheel Garden" on Wednesday, April 16, at 9:30 a.m. CT with hundreds of supporters creating a display of thousands of pinwheels – the national symbol for child abuse prevention. The event calls for people to take action in support of healthy child development as the nation marks April as Child Abuse Prevention Month. This event follows the April 8th Big Pinwheel Garden in Times Square and is one of many such events taking place nationwide throughout April as part of the Pinwheels for Prevention® campaign, through which Prevent Child Abuse America has distributed more than 3.5 million pinwheels nationwide since April 2008.

“We have a responsibility as a city to ensure that every single child in Chicago is able to grow up in a healthy, safe environment,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “Chicago remains committed to preventing child abuse and neglect by increasing support services for families, including our efforts to expand domestic violence shelters for the first time in more than a decade. I am proud to stand with Prevent Child Abuse America and Prevent Child Abuse Illinois to observe Child Abuse Prevention Month and raise awareness for this important issue.”

Mayor Emanuel and Alderman O’Connor will be joined in speaking at the event by Prevent Child Abuse America President and CEO Jim Hmurovich and Prevent Child Abuse Illinois Executive Director Roy Harley.

“We’re here to reinforce the notion that all children deserve stable and happy childhoods, and that we all play a role in making this happen,” said Alderman O’Connor. “As a member of the City Council, one role I play is helping to make sure, along with Mayor and fellow City Council members, that policies and programs are in place that help create environments in which children can thrive. Together we can protect our children from bullying or sexual abuse, and together we can make sure that our children are nurtured and healthy.”

To support the campaign, the public can:

• Help a neighbor in need by offering to baby-sit or give parents a break
• Volunteer for your Prevent Child Abuse America state chapter or another child- or family- serving agency
• Donate at www.pinwheelsforprevention.org/give
• Donate $10 by texting PINWHEEL to 20222* (powered by www.givebycell.com)


“According to UNICEF, the U.S. ranks poorly in children’s issues, including being 32nd out of 34 industrialized nations in terms of child poverty and 26th out of 29 in terms of overall well-being. Realities like these should serve as a wake-up call and that we can and must do better,” said Jim Hmurovich, President & CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. “Pinwheel gardens are calls-to-action, some as simple as to provide the personal attention to families and children that each of us, from time to time, have needed ourselves. The pinwheels remind us that our nation does not have a national strategy to promote the healthy development of each child, regardless of their circumstances. This must change and our social norms as a nation must change from where we say we value children to all citizens playing an active role in children’s lives.”

“In Illinois,“ Roy Harley, Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Illinois pointed out, “our commitment along with all of our public and private sector partners, is that all children grow up in safe, healthy, nurturing environments free of abuse or endangerment of any kind. We know how to do this with effective family programs, early education, and community supports and we have to do this. We have to invest in children! A bright future for all of them is a bright future for all of us. Pinwheels say that every child matters and everyone needs to be involved.”

Prevent Child Abuse America state chapters’ pinwheels-focused events throughout April including a pinwheel garden event hosted by Nebraska’s First Lady in downtown Lincoln, NE; a “pinwheel garden” of 1,000 pinwheels in Indianapolis (each representing 87 healthy births for the 87,000 children born annually in Indiana); and pinwheel rallies at state capitals around the country.

 

Actor Josh Charles and Prevent Child Abuse America transform Times Square into Big Pinwheel Garden

 

Actor Josh Charles and Prevent Child Abuse America transform Times Square into Big Pinwheel Garden

Event promotes pinwheel as symbol for healthy starts for our nation’s children

APRIL 9, 2014 (NEW YORK, NY) – "The Good Wife" actor Josh Charles helped Prevent Child Abuse America transform Times Square into the Big Pinwheel Garden yesterday to mark Child Abuse Prevention Month and promote the pinwheel as the symbol for healthy starts for all children. Charles was joined by Manhattan magazine’s Cristina Cuomo and over 200 volunteers, holding nearly 5,000 pinwheels to create the display.

"I hope to be a father someday soon, and I feel strongly that living an innocent, care-free life isn't a right for just SOME children. It's the right for ALL children, regardless of the neighborhood they grow up in – or their socio-economic status," said Charles. "I care about the welfare of the next generation. Children are the artists, the politicians, the engineers, the doctors, the scientists of tomorrow, and I want to see ALL of them have the chance to lead full, productive, and safe lives."

The Times Square Big Pinwheel Garden is one of many such activities taking place across the country throughout April's Child Abuse Prevention Month, and is the signature event of the organization’s Pinwheels for Prevention® campaign, through which Prevent Child Abuse America has distributed more than 3.5 million pinwheels nationwide since April 2008.

“According to UNICEF, the U.S. ranks poorly in children’s issues, including being 32nd out of 34 industrialized nations in terms of child poverty and 26th out of 29 in terms of overall well-being. Realities like these should serve as a wake-up call and that we can and must do better,” said Jim Hmurovich, President & CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. “Pinwheel gardens are calls-to-action, some as simple as to provide the personal attention to families and children that each of us, from time to time, have needed ourselves. The pinwheels remind us that our nation does not have a national strategy to promote the healthy development of each child, regardless of their circumstances. This must change and our call to action must be to change our personal behavior, attitudes and social norms to value children; all children.”

To support Prevent Child Abuse America's efforts, the public can:

• Help a neighbor in need by offering to baby-sit or give parents a break
• Volunteer for your Prevent Child Abuse America state chapter or another child-serving agency
• Donate at www.pinwheelsforprevention.org/give
• Donate $10 by texting PINWHEEL to 20222* (powered by www.givebycell.com)

 

 

 

Prevent Child Abuse America teams with actor Josh Charles to turn Tims Square into Big Pinwheel Garden on April 8

 

Prevent Child Abuse America teams with actor Josh Charles to turn Times Square into Big Pinwheel Garden on April 8

NYC event headlines month-long series of activities nationwide calling people to action in support of healthy starts for kids throughout April's Child Abuse Prevention Month

APRIL 7, 2014 (NEW YORK, NY) – Prevent Child Abuse America and actor Josh Charles from the Emmy-nominated CBS show, The Good Wife, will turn New York City’s iconic Times Square into a "Big Pinwheel Garden" on Tuesday, April 8, at 9:00 a.m. ET with hundreds of supporters creating a display of more than 5,000 pinwheels – the national symbol for child abuse prevention. The event calls for people to take action in support of healthy child development as the nation marks April as Child Abuse Prevention Month. This will be the signature event of the Pinwheels for Prevention® campaign, through which Prevent Child Abuse America has distributed more than 3.5 million pinwheels nationwide since the campaign’s launch in April 2008.

“We all want healthy starts for our nation’s children; yet we know that various adversities like poverty, child abuse, domestic violence and substance abuse can sometimes get in the way,” said Charles. “But we can all play a role in taking the time to do what we can, to provide every child with the opportunity to have an even playing field as they start their lives. I’m a good example. I’m not a parent but hope to be in the future and very much want to see all children have the opportunity to lead full, productive lives.”

Charles will be joined at the event by Cristina Cuomo, Editor-in-Chief of Manhattan magazine, who will host the proceedings. Key organizational partners such as Manhattan magazine, Kappa Delta, Sigma Delta Tau and the General Federation of Women’s Clubs are lending support.

To support the campaign, the public can:

• Help a neighbor in need by offering to baby-sit or give parents a break
• Volunteer for your Prevent Child Abuse America state chapter or another child- or family- serving agency
• Donate at www.pinwheelsforprevention.org/give
• Donate $10 by texting PINWHEEL to 20222* (powered by www.givebycell.com)

“According to UNICEF, the U.S. ranks poorly in children’s issues, including being 32nd out of 34 industrialized nations in terms of child poverty and 26th out of 29 in terms of overall well-being. Realities like these should serve as a wake-up call and that we can and must do better,” said Jim Hmurovich, President & CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. “Pinwheel gardens are calls-to-action, some as simple as to provide the personal attention to families and children that each of us, from time to time, have needed ourselves. The pinwheels remind us that our nation does not have a national strategy to promote the healthy development of each child, regardless of their circumstances. This must change and our call to action must be to change our personal behavior, attitudes and social norms to value children; all children.”

In addition to the New York City event on Tuesday, April 8, the organization will host another Big Pinwheel Garden in Chicago on Wednesday, April 16, at Navy Pier, and Prevent Child Abuse America state chapters will conduct pinwheels-focused events throughout April, including a pinwheel garden event hosted by Nebraska’s First Lady in downtown Lincoln, NE; a “pinwheel garden” of 1,000 pinwheels in Indianapolis (each representing 87 healthy births for the 87,000 children born annually in Indiana); and pinwheel rallies at state capitals around the country.

 

 

 

Newsletter Sign-up

healthy families-icn
pinwheels-icn