University of Pittsburgh
September 19, 2002

University of Pittsburgh Spearheads Program for Kinship Care Families


Sharon Blake


Cell: 412-277-6926

September 19, 2002

PITTSBURGH—Generations Together (GT), a program of intergenerational studies at the University of Pittsburgh, is spearheading a new local effort to assist grandparents, aunts, and uncles who are raising their own grandchildren, nieces, or nephews.

The Family Wellness Program for Kinship Care Families will take place on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sept. 28 through Dec. 21 at the Emory United Methodist Church, 325 N. Highland Ave. in East Liberty. The free series is both faith-based and intergenerational, with activities that provide emotional, physical, and spiritual support, as well as opportunities for the generations to connect.

According to Census 2000, there are more than 23,000 grandparents living with grandchildren in Allegheny County. Of those, more than 9,400 are completely responsible for meeting their grandchildren's needs.

"Grandparents often begin actively parenting again suddenly, unexpectedly, and in a very different world than the one in which they parented the first time around," says David Fetterman, director of GT's Grandparents Raising Grandkin Program. "It can be a time of upheaval for both grandparents and grandchildren."

The new program will focus on health, nutrition, exercise, parenting skills, prayer and meditation, stress management and reduction, and discussions of individual concerns and needs. Each day's activities end with a free lunch for all participants. Other program partners include Pitt's Health, Physical, and Recreation Education Department; the Parental Stress Center; and the Parish and Congregational Nurse and Health Ministries of Mercy Hospital. For more information, call Generations Together at 412/624-5997.