Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Louisiana is currently enrolling volunteers for the AmeriCorps Foster Grandparent Program (FGP). Foster Grandparent volunteers work in a classroom setting one-on-one with students who struggle with reading and math. The FGP program serves schools in Lake Charles, Sulphur, Iowa, Crowley, Jennings, and Westlake, and is actively expanding to rural areas.
Along with practical hands-on work, grandparents also help boost the self-esteem and self-confidence of their students by regularly praising their efforts and accomplishments, no matter how small the achievement may be. For many of the children in the program, this may be the only praise they receive throughout their day, apart from their teachers. Helping children reach their full potential and eventually realize their dreams is the goal of our teachers and parents. Foster Grandparents work beside these people, giving the extra support and help some children desperately need.
For a child who struggles to learn, it is a wonderful thing for them to have a foster grandparent sit with them while they work, not to judge but to encourage and help them to achieve their best.
Funded by AmeriCorps Seniors, Foster Grandparents receive a small, non-taxable hourly stipend that does not affect any government benefits they may already be receiving. Foster Grandparents can work 20 to 40 hours per week, receive mileage reimbursement, and receive paid time off for holidays.
Those interested in becoming a Foster Grandparent must be age 55 or older, capable of working a minimum of 20 hours/week unless non-stipend, both enjoy and be physically able to work with children in a classroom setting, and able to pass a multi-level background check.
For more information visit their website at http://www.bbbsswla.org/foster-grandparent-program/ or contact Kathy Richard, program director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 337-478-5437 ext. 104.