Government Shutdown Halts Operations for Foster Grandparents Program
The government shutdown prevented around 90 Alachua county foster grandparents from continuing to participate in the Foster Grandparents Program.
Minnie Rolark, interim director of community support services, said citizens age 55 and over received $2.65 per hour to care for foster children in the area. Congress kept this stipend from affecting Social Security benefits.
The program was federally funded by a $374,670 grant from the Corporation of National Services. With the government shutdown, the program has lost this money, and the foster grandparents now have to try to live on their low fixed income and/or small social security checks.
Not only will their income diminish, but they also will no longer be able to help special needs children. The grandparents help children develop math, reading and social skills.
Rolark said she hopes the government shutdown will end quickly so program participants can get back to working with special needs kids.
More Stories in Local
Recent studies suggests a nasal spray form of the flu vaccine is more effective than the flu shot in healthy children ages 2 to 8, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Local bar and music venue The Jam will close its doors this November after lease troubles and other plans for the area.
Parrots and Pizza, a local group that meets monthly at Napolatano’s Restaurant in Gainesville, works closely with the Open Wings Rescue and Sanctuary in a joint effort to get attendees of the event to adopt parrots in need of new homes.
Two-year-old Rainer received her first extreme home makeover, with renovations costing $350,000. Her new space is 70 feet in length, complete with rope courses, trees and tunnels.
The Gainesville Parks Recreation and Cultural Affairs will work again with the Rotary Clubs of Gainesville Foundation to renovate Smokey Bear Park, which both organizations contributed to creating in 1963.