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More And More Grandparents Are Now Primary Caregivers For Their Grandchildren

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For some kids, a visit to their grandparents is a special occasion, but an increasing number of children are now being raised by their grandparents. 

Disability, financial hardship, incarceration, abuse, and, more recently, the heroin and opioid epidemic, are some of the main reasons grandparents become the primary caregivers for their grandchildren. Nationally, more than 2.5 million grandparents are raising grandchildren. Six percent of children in Kentucky, approximately 57,000, have a grandparent as a primary caregiver, according to the 2010 U.S. Census.

Here to discuss grandparents as primary caregivers, the challenges they face and services available to them are Director of Advocacy for Children Inc., Mike Hammons; AmeriCorps volunteer for Children, Inc. who helped organize a recent conference on grandparents raising kids, Rebecca Hollis; and a Kentucky grandmother who has raised three grandchildren, Jeanne Miller-Jacobs.