University of Pittsburgh
April 22, 1998

PITT PROGRAM THAT HELPS MENTALLY DISABLED CHILDREN RECEIVES ADDITIONAL FUNDING

Contact: 

Sharon Blake

412-624-4364

Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH, April 23 -- A grant of $25,000 will extend for 18 months a University of Pittsburgh program that provides assistance to families whose children are diagnosed with mental illness or disorders.

Family Friends recruits volunteers over the age of 50 to provide

at-home emotional support for the parents, academic assistance for the children, or to accompany the child or other family members to cultural or recreational events. The Family Friend often serves as an advocate, helping the family to remain connected with the community. Pitt's Family Friends program links volunteers with about 25 families a year.

"Many of these families are overwhelmed by day to day parenting and physical care of their children," said John Cassase, director of school and family-based programs at Generations Together, Pitt's program of intergenerational studies and recipient of the grant.

The Faith in Action grant is from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's largest private philanthropy dedicated to improving health care through grant-giving.

For more information about Family Friends, call Generations Together at 412-648-7157.

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