New grant supports grandparents raising grandkids due to opioid crisis

Local News

Pennsylvania has been awarded nearly $480,000 to develop a kinship navigator program.

The United States Department of Health and Human Services Administration for children and families awarded the money to help increase the support for grandparents raising grandchildren due to the opioid crisis.

“When a child is unable to live in a parent’s care, supporting family members that assume caregiving responsibilities of their grandchildren, nieces and nephews is often the best option to provide the child with a safe, healthy, and loving home,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller. “As these families adjust, they may need additional supports and resources. This funding makes progress toward establishing a statewide kinship navigator program that can be a resource and lifeline for children and relative caregivers around Pennsylvania.”

The navigator program will be a resource for children and relative caregivers across the state to find and get benefits and available services.

“We really have a responsibility in Pennsylvania  to ensure that these services exist because if we don’t we’re really jeopardizing the health and welfare of our future generations,” said Jennifer Smith, Secretary, Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs.

More funding is also being considered.

House bill 2133, which would help establish the statewide kinship navigator program under DHS, passed the House and is currently under consideration by the Pennsylvania State Senate.

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