Archive | July 2005

Nichelle Mitchem Interviewed in Suburban Chicago News

In Suburban Chicago News’ article “Grand dilemma,” Nichelle Mitchem discusses the difficulties confronting grandparents raising grandchildren and the important role they play in the prevention of their grandchildren’s admission into foster care.

Although the phenomenon of grandparents raising grandchildren is neither novel nor new, this emerging social issue is garnering a great deal of national attention due to its impact on the welfare of an ever increasing number of our nation’s children. The rise in the number of grandparent headed households is due to serious family problems. The reasons for the increase in grandparent headed households include but are not limited to: abandonment, child abuse and neglect, substance abuse, teenage pregnancy, death, divorce, incarceration, AIDS, and the parent’s lack of employment.

Caring for their grandchildren can have life altering consequences for the grandparents. Many grandparents have not planned to raise a second family or may be retired and living on a fixed income. Having sufficient income or resources to provide housing, food, clothing, medicine, and school supplies for their grandchildren may be of critical concern. Research indicates that children raised by their grandparents are more likely than children in traditional foster care to live in poverty, to have special health and educational needs, and to lack access to health care.

While grandparents have played a significant role in the lives of their grandchildren for generations, the increasing numbers of grandparents with responsibility for their grandchildren and the rise in social factors necessitating this arrangement have created millions of vulnerable families with unique needs. For further information on the topic of grandparents raising grandchildren or to get help, please call or visit the website of: AARP’s Grandparent Information Center: 202-434-2296; and Generation’s United: 202-289-3979.

Photo Credit: Microsoft Clip Art

Nichelle Mitchem Presents at the National Center’s First Symposium

“The participant evaluations indicate that the National Center’s first symposium was a rousing success, drawing over 200 participants from 30 states. The symposium participants included academics, researchers, policy makers, and practitioners. The evaluations indicated that the participants were most pleased with the caliber of presenters and the cutting edge information disseminated on best practices in service provision to grandparent-headed families.” —May-June 2005 Georgia State University E-Newsletter

As Director of Operations, Nichelle Mitchem presents and serves on the planning committee of the National Center’s opening symposium.

Photo Credit: Microsoft Clip Art

Nichelle Mitchem Receives Local and National Media Coverage on the Topic of Kinship Care

As noted in Georgia State University e-newsletter, Nichelle Mitchem was interviewed by local and national media about the issues confronting grandparents raising grandchildren.

Photo Credit: Microsoft Clip Art