The relationship between grandparents and grandchildren, is unique, there is nothing quite like it.

It benefits both generations in so many ways.

Grandchildren love to listen to stories from the ‘olden days,’ it seems that the olden days are closer than I ever remember them!

They love to hear about their family history, all those amazing characters that all families have, a gran who was never asleep but just ‘resting her eyes.’

Grandparents give the grandchildren all the time they want, because we can. We don’t have to juggle washing, ironing, cooking, work ect, we have already done that as parents. The washing can wait.

It seems that grandparents actually don’t care how much mess grandchildren make, greasy finger prints over the window, or those impossible to remove pasta sauce stains on the sofa, they can all be dealt with later.

It is these sorts of things that grandparents miss beyond words when contact is denied. We know from estranged grandchildren that they miss all of that as well, and they keep those memories forever.

We are asked all the time by grandparents if there is a way that they could become surrogate grandparents, or be an adopted grandparent. We also receive calls from parents who don’t have grandparents within their family and they would love to be able to access such a scheme.

It is something that we have looked into with Dame Esther Rantzen, but because of safeguarding issues it is not possible. Of course the grandparents that I have got to know over the last 10 years would be amazing as an adopted grandparent, but it seems there is no way forward.

Some grandparents are involved with Home Start https://www.home-start.org.uk/Pages/FAQs/Category/ways-to-volunteer,

“Across the UK nearly 15,000 volunteers visit families at home each week offering support, friendship, emotional and practical help.

A home-visiting volunteer provides support for a family in the family’s own home, usually spending a couple of hours once a week with the parents and their children.

You work with each family to help them in the way they need most. This may be with practical tasks such as escaping from the house, getting to appointments or helping get organised; offering advice and sharing experiences; or supporting parents through emotional issues.”

Grandparents build up wonderful relationships with the family.

If you look at the link above you can see where to find a local centre.

Grandparents want to give so much and there are families out there who really need them.

If you have experience of being a volunteer for Home Start, we would love to hear them.

Jane