One of the joys of growing older and having your children grown up is that you may be blessed with Grandchildren. For most Grandparents playing with their energetic and fun-filled Grandchildren when they come to visit is a time to treasure. Watching their now grown children deal with the ups and downs of parenting while offering support from the side line is a role to be enjoyed and is all part of the journey. However many Grandparents are finding themselves in the position of full-time parenting rather than a traditional Grandparenting role.
Maygrove Village staff and residents recently began an initiative to support the Hibiscus Coast Grandparents Parenting Grandchildren Inc. This local organisation supports a number of Grandparents that have had to make the difficult decision to accept the full-time care of their Grandchildren, or see them placed into state care. Bjorn Modigh, the organisations president explains that often Grandparents feel isolated in the issue, receive very little financial or personal support and are hesitant to ask for help. HCGPG was established to provide support and fellowship to Grandparents and help them in receiving assistance and aid when required. He finds that an important factor for Grandparents parenting Grandchildren is just that they want to feel that somebody understands, cares and supports them and that they are not alone.
The team at Maygrove Village started with the idea that this Christmas it would be lovely to give each Grandchild at HBGPG Inc, a box filled with treats and necessary items. The residents got behind the ‘Shoe Box’ idea whole heartedly and started donating age appropriate gifts, necessary items such as toiletries, underwear and socks, food items and activities books or games. Maygrove Village Manager Jeanne Jury says, “The charity resonates with the Village residents because so many of them are Grandparents themselves and they can understand the pressure faced by Grandparents who have a 24/7 role..” The residents began with the goal of filling 50 Christmas boxes, they achieved this and also filled numerous bags of extra items, groceries and toys. Maygrove Village Ltd also gave fuel vouchers to assist the Grandparents in their day to day travels.
The initiative has highlighted this growing issue in our communities and not something that many of us would ever consider is a possibility as we grow older. Most people plan to retire and enjoy the freedom of their empty nest lifestyle, travelling, socialising with friends and peers and taking a step back in responsibilities. For more information on Hibiscus Coast Grandparents Parenting Grandchildren go to hbcgpg.weebly.com or phone 021 024 300 64
Maygrove Village is part of the family owned and operated Hopper Living group. Hopper Living are Retirement Lifestyle Communities that Care.