PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 17, 2012 — In order to discuss the unique and growing needs of second-time parents and their families, state Sen. Anthony H. Williams, along with Turning Points for Children, Grands As Parents, and the Kinship Care Committee, welcome the public to attend a free kinship care conversation on the issues facing this special group of  caregivers.

This panel discussion is open to all intergenerational caregivers and their supporters and will take place on Thursday, March 8 from 10 a.m. to noon at Bright Hope Baptist Church, 12th Street & Cecil B. Moore Avenue in Philadelphia.

“The decision to raise a grandchild or a young relative is a noble commitment, and we want to make sure that these families are receiving the services and support they need,” Williams said. “This panel discussion will provide an opportunity for conversation with the audience about the many aspects of informal kinship care and the local resources that are available, so I welcome all relative caregivers to attend this informative event.”

The number of children being raised by a grandparent or other relative is rising. One child in 10 in the United States lives with a grandparent.  For four out of 10 of those children, that grandparent is the primary caregiver.

Joy Woods Jones of Temple University and Grandma’s Kids, Richelle Phillips from the Grand Family Resource Center, Chartan Nelson from Grand Central Inc., and Jean Hackney from Grands As Parents will lead the discussion on topics like “What can I do to take better care of myself?” “Why should I go to a support group”? “What free services and programs are available to help my child and me?”

Light refreshments will be provided, as well as free children’s books and a kinship care resource guide will be available for attendees.

Williams is a vocal advocate for kinship caregivers. His Senate Bill 119, the Intergenerational Family Care Act, would help families in which children are being raised by their grandparents or other generation-skipping older relatives. If enacted, it would address critical needs identified at the conference, such as rental assistance, day-care assistance for working heads of households and development and improvement of intergenerational housing.

This session is the second in a series of panel discussions to be held throughout the city as an outgrowth of our successful Helping Hands Intergenerational Resource and Information Conference in May 2011.

For more information, call 215-492-2980.