Program aimed at grandparents raising grandchildren

Published 9:19 am Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Many look forward to the season in life when children are finally grown and gone and retirement is nearing.

This stage could offer time to finish little projects that may have been set on the back burner or it could be the opportunity to start a new hobby.

But what if those plans get altered because the days of raising little ones returns due to the unforeseeable future.

Statistics show that nationwide, 2.7 million grandparents are raising grandchildren and these ranks are increasing.

In an effort to reach out to those encumbered with raising their grandchildren, Hawkins United Methodist Church will offer a program entitled The Grand Connections: Community Outreach for Grandparents and Kin Raising Children.

The inaugural event will run from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Monday, in the church’s fellowship hall, 3736 Halls Ferry Road.

The Rev. Sally Bevill, who is the minister at Hawkins, said the idea of offering the monthly program grew out of a “discernment process.”

“I was made aware that many of our grandparents are raising their grandchildren,” Bevill said. “We at Hawkins started talking about the issue.

“The main hope of the program is to create a safe environment to hear each others’ stories and build a community that reaches outside the church’s walls.”

Programs will also be aimed at building family strength, aiding in resources and community support, providing education and enrichment activities and developing relationships with others in similar situations.

The program director at Hawkins UMC, Julie Townly, will lead Monday’s program, which will focus on kitchen fun and healthy snacks for kids.

Bevill said the event is free and childcare will be available, but registration is required.

“We want to make sure we have enough food for those attending,” she said.

Two more programs are scheduled.

On Monday, July 24, Shelly Plett, who is the communication director at the church and info tech coordinator for St. Aloysius High School will present a program about safe social media, and on Monday August 28, attorney, Gene Perrier, will discuss legal issues.

For more information and or to make reservations, call 601-636-2242.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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