Grandcarers Education Supplement Fund
Grandparents For Grandchildren SA Inc. (GFGSA) is a support and advocacy service for grandparents that have taken on the role of primary carer to their grandchildren. It has been providing these services for 14 years.
GFGSA listens to grandparents and their concerns regarding their grandchildren and helps them to discover solutions to those issues. It also helps grandparent carers navigate the courts, government agencies and other service providers who can assist and support them as well as providing assistance with referral services for grandparents e.g. psychologists, psychiatrists and lawyers.
Growing up in disadvantaged circumstances can compromise children’s readiness to learn. Children living in financially disadvantaged circumstances have fewer opportunities to extend their learning opportunities, because their grandparents cannot afford to purchase the materials, experiences and services that facilitate positive development. These may be as simple as a new pair of school shoes, the opportunity to participate in a school outing, or to be involved in after school sporting activities.
GFGSA clients fall overwhelmingly into this disadvantaged category. Having the capacity to support young children in these areas could make a compellingly positive impact on learning outcomes and, indeed, on actual retention rates.
Today’s educational programs are not limited to the classroom environment, and all educational materials are not supplied by the school. Extra-curricular activities are now considered an extension of the classroom and participation in sport, for example, teaches discipline and teamwork, and promotes a healthy lifestyle.
GFGSA provides small amounts of financial support, to enable disadvantaged grandchildren to purchase essential items such as laptops, uniforms, books, and educational outings, which would otherwise be beyond the financial reach of their grandparents.
It is to be stressed, that any such assistance is restricted to minor amounts, and targeted specifically to enable participation in normal educational activities.
GFGSA expect use of the Grandcarers Education Supplement Fund to enable the following outcomes-
- positive educational results
- less negative classroom situations
- reduced family conflict
- decreased negative mental states
- removal of the “embarrassment” factor for less affluent students
The UCF Board was pleased to approve a grant of $2,000 towards this Fund to ease the burden on grandcarers in need of assistance.