[Jamestown, NY] – Lutheran Foster Grandparents, Elaine Kimbleton and Connie Mignoli, recently worked with students in small groups on number skills in Pat Cunningham’s UPK class at Love Elementary School. Both ladies have been Foster Grandparents for a few years in the schools.
“I got involved because I wanted to do something I really loved after I retired and I just love being around the kids,” said Grandma Elaine. “We do a lot of small group or one-on-one activities under the supervision of the teacher and it’s wonderful for the kids to have an adult of a different age working with, and helping, them. The kids keep me young!”
“I worked in the Love School kitchens and after school program and wanted to stay involved with the Love kids after I retired,” said Grandma Connie. “There is so much kids are expected to learn especially before they enter kindergarten and we can help give the children individual attention. It is just so much fun.”
There are currently 28 Foster Grandparents serving in the Jamestown elementary schools. The Lutheran Foster Grandparent Program serves the region of Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, and Allegany counties in Southwestern New York State. The project recruits, places, and manages volunteers to nurture one-on-one relationships with children in need of extra help. Foster Grandparent volunteers work under the guidance and tutelage of a teacher or site supervisor. They are mature adults (over the age of 55), of low-to-moderate income and have a desire to serve in their community by helping children to be successful in school.
“My data and reports affirm wonderful things are accomplished when there is a constant adult in a child’s life and fantastic things happen with an intergenerational approach to learning. However, reports only tell part of the story, these grandparents are the kindest people I know. Their goal is being a positive role model and nurturing a legacy for learning in every student,” said Debbie Basile, Project Director of the Foster Grandparent Program.
If you are interested in becoming a Foster Grandparent, you’ll receive a paid orientation, travel assistance and accident and personal liability insurance. Income-eligible individuals can also earn a tax-free hourly stipend. Please call Lutheran Foster Grandparents Program at 716-665-5354 for more information.