help for grandparents seeking guardianship


A $15,000 grant by the Foundation of the State Bar of California will help to expand a program that helps grandparents who want to be named guardians for their grandchildren.  The grant is going to the Superior Court of California’s Self Help Assistance and Referral Program (SHARP).

According to an article in the Oroville [CA] Mercury-Register, “Grant funds grandparent guardianship program” (Dec. 20, 2006), court staff have observed “a recent dramatic increase in grandparents seeking completion of the legal guardianship process. The 2000 California Census showed that 6.8 percent of all children under 18 years of age in California lived in grandparent-headed households.” 

“The approved grant allows the [s]elf-help program to provide informational seminars and presentations by local practitioners (judges/attorneys) to grandparents seeking guardianship. Additionally, SHARP will frequently offer a slower-paced three-hour workshop given by a local attorney geared specifically towards grandparents. The award funds production of a video and written material on grandparent guardianship to be shared with other community organizations, self-help centers, and governmental agencies. 

You can learn more about SHARP programs (including Kinship Care assistance and guardianship clinic) at the website of the Glenn County Superior Court.  As we noted in a prior post, SHARP serves self-represented litigants in three rural Calirfornia counties via videoconferencing workshops. “The centers offer procedural help with certain legal issues, as well as self-help resources and computers.  SHARP’s managing attorney conducts topical workshops by videoconference so that clients at all of the centers can participate simultaneously.” 

  • update (2 PM): You can find information on the kinship foster care policies (concerning grandparents or other relatives) of each state, and other issues affecting grandparents, through this Grandparenting Fact Sheet page from AARP.

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