Monday, December 6, 2010

Money to Help You Raise Your Grandchildren, Nieces and Nephews

What is “subsidized guardianship?” It is money received to help raise children that you are fostering, as opposed to birth children or adopted children. Once, there was only money to help raise foster children that weren’t your relatives. Now, the federal and many state governments realize that grandparents, aunts and uncles need financial help when stepping into foster parenting shoes. Towards that end, the federal government passed the Kinship Caregiver Support Act, which authorizes foster care money for relatives who are raising children. Many states have adopted this, and provide money for relatives raising children.  In Ohio, you apply through the Office of Jobs and Family Services link. (866-866-3537).  There is also a Kinship Care Permancy Incentive program for extra help for poorer families (not over 300% of the poverty level). 
The Child Welfare League, AARP and others have worked together to create information for every state about the laws and financial aid available to relatives who foster their grandchildren, nieces and nephews. The Grandfact page has a drop-down menu of states on the right-hand side of the page that you can click to find financial aid and legal information for kinship fostering, and organizations in your state that can help you.

Some states have also instituted the Kinship Navigator Program, which helps relatives find out how to apply for the money and provides other types of support for child rearing, like support groups. To find out if your state has such a program, go to google and put in: “kinship navigator program” or "kinship care" (remember to use the quote marks) and the name of your state. If your state has this program, you should be able to find a link to it for more information.

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