Grandparents caring for children get help from province

Jackie Agnew (left), Cynthia Poirier, Jean Torok, Minister Tina Mundy, and Joan Newell.

Supporting Island families -

Grandparents, other family members, and friends caring for children will get financial help and supports from the provincial government.

A new Grandparents and Care Providers program helps families who provide out-of-home care for children for safety reasons, giving them $700 per month (per child) as well as child care and children’s dental and drug coverage.  Government is acting on requests from grandparents for help in providing safe living arrangements for children and on the recommendations from the Child Protection Act review.

“When a parent is unable to safely care for a child, living with a familiar person is best for the child and reduces trauma - which is our top priority,” Family and Human Services Minister Tina Mundy said. “We listened to grandparents and Islanders, and today we are announcing the first phase of the program focused on the most urgent concerns.

“This program helps ease the financial burden for the grandparents and family members who are providing a safe, loving home for a child.”

“We are absolutely thrilled that government is giving grandparents this much-needed and well-deserved support to care for children,” said Pat Poirier, Summerside grandparent group facilitator.  “The program is way beyond our expectations, and the fact that government responded so quickly to our concerns is fantastic.”

There are 54 children in Prince Edward Island who live in 47 homes with family members or someone close to them - and 39 of those are in grandparent-led homes. These arrangements prevent the child from coming into the legal custody and guardianship of the province.

“Work will continue on the next phase to address areas such as legal, educational and medical decisions for children,” Minister Mundy said. “We have been reviewing programs in other provinces to explore options that work best for Island families.

“I want to thank the grandparents who shared their personal stories which helped shaped this program to support vulnerable children and their families,” the minister said.

The program will be available December 1 by contacting Child Protection Services at 1-877-341-3101.

Media contact:
Darlene Gillis

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