Healthy Grandfamilies program expands across the state

Published: Jan. 15, 2020 at 6:28 PM EST
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"He's not real into sharing, by any means ...but he was eating potato chips and he handed me this potato chip and it was heart shaped, he said 'Granny I think this one is for you,'"

Marcia Bogumil raises her 11 year old grandson Donavon.

"Raising a child in the current years, a whole lot different than when I raised mine,"

She was a part of the second class of the "Healthy Grandfamilies program" in Harrison county.

Riley Freeland’s was raised by her grandparents and now helps run the Harrison county chapter.

In the 8 week program, grandparents are educated in a variety of important topics.

"How to navigate the legal system is a really big one, we have legal aid have come in for that," Freeland said "We have how to navigate the school system, we have social workers from the school,"

Over the past year the program has spread, thanks to a partnership with state employees, to get a grand family chapter in each county.

"We served 48 families who went through our program and we were able to impact 71 kids," Freeland said of the Harrison county chapter

The program provides for a meal and daycare, to remove any barriers that might keep grandparents from getting to class.

Since graduating the 8 week class, Bogumil and her grandson have kept up with the monthly support group.

Not only does it connect the grandparents, but it provides connections for the kids as well.

"The children have become close, because of the fact that they are two in the same situation as their peers,"

The biggest benefit Bogumil has gotten from the program, is all in the name.

"We're like a big family, to say the least"

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