Parent Support Services Society of BC

    Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

GRG Support Line

This toll-free line assists grandparents and other relatives raising a family member's child to navigate complex services systems such as MCFD; to find the answers, assistance and resources they need to prevent or solve problems; and to learn about benefits and services that will support the whole family.

The GRG Support line is staffed by two part-time advocates with training in advocacy, social work, family law, and government services pertaining to kinship caregiving.  The GRG Support line is open on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 11 AM to 3 PM.  At all other times callers are encouraged to leave a voicemail message or send an e-mail, which will be returned as soon as possible. 

GRG Support Line Contacts:

  • By phone toll-free province-wide: 1-855-474-9777
  • By phone in the Lower Mainland: (604) 558-4740
  • By confidential e-mail

View the GRG Support Line poster.

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Circles

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren (GRG) Support Circles are anonymous, confidential self-help groups offering weekly or bi-weekly meetings and other activities organized by trained volunteer facilitators. GRG Support Circles help grandparents and others raising a family member’s child learn positive parenting by providing them with a safe atmosphere in which to share their stories and stresses, learn new skills, receive emotional support and discover services and resources. The Circles strengthen the first link in a chain that connects positive caregiving with healthy children, and help healthy families build strong communities.

Currently, Parent Support Services Society of BC offers Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Circles in partnership with community agencies in the Lower Mainland, the Fraser Valley, in Victoria and mid/northern Vancouver Island, Kelowna and Prince George. See our GRG Support Circle Flyer for more information, see our list of the GRG Support Circles by location, or contact the Program Coordinator in your region to register!

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Telling Our Stories

The  documentary Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Telling Our Stories provides a glimpse into the realities faced by several grandparent led families from across BC. These grandparents didn’t plan to be full time caregivers at this later stage in their lives. Their stories are varied, but many of the threads are the same: loss, isolation, grief, hardship, love and determination. The grandchildren are their priority and they need and deserve, love, stability and all the support possible to ensure they can succeed in life.  “This documentary will make you laugh, make you cry, and we hope, make you think.”

Launched the week of Family Day 2015 across the province - check out these trailers, that give a taste of just some of these diverse and inspiring stories. 


Media Coverage - Documentary Launch

Just some of the media coverage of the launch of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Telling Our Stories

Carol Ross, Parent Support Services' Advocacy & Kinship Care Director is in conversation about raising grandkids (plus we hear from some GRG's themselves). Starts at 22:22 mark.…/podcas…/bcalmanac_20150210_16777.mp3

A powerful interview with Grandparent Bernadine Fox:…/Local+S…/British+Columbia/ID/2652869641/

Grandparent Bernadine and her granddaughter Avy on Radio Canada TV discussing our documentary Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Telling Our Stories (Interviews in English)…/mediaconsole/medianet/7240793

GRG Legal Seminars


Parent Support Services Society of BC has developed informative, interactive, legal information seminars that will outline Kinship Care facts and options, relevant legislation, government and community resources, benefits and services available for grandparents and other relatives raising family members. For more information call 604-669-1616 (toll free 1-877-345-9777) or email .  


Parent Support Services hosts different regional events in celebration and support of grandparents raising grandchildren and the children they are raising.  

The GRG Annual Summer Picnics

The annual GRG Summer Picnics, which are hosted in four regions across BC, provide an occasion to foster family and community connectedness and support, to share and learn about PSS and community resources, and to simply come together for food, fun and a care-free afternoon. PSS provides food, refreshments, entertainment and prizes which are given away to the grandparents and grandchildren at the picnic. The Lower Mainland GRG Summer Picnic, hosted in Queen’s Park, New Westminster, often sees an attendance of over eighty GRG’s and their grandchildren.

Thank you to this year's donors!



The GRG Overnight Galiano Retreat

Is this trip right for your family? Here are some important details to help you decide:

  • It is best suited for children 5 years old and over
  • Grandparents are expected to participate with the children
  • You will need to make your own way to the ferry terminal and pay for parking
  • There is considerable time spent walking during the Conservancy programming (both days)
  • Cabins may be shared to allow as many families as possible to participate

pss fundrasing from Green Waves Video Production on Vimeo.

Workshop - Central Island

Attachment: How grandparents raising their grandchildren can support and enhance this relationship.

Thursday, April 30, 2015 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Nanaimo Aquatic Centre, Jack Little A room

Grandparents who are raising their grandchildren may notice that their grandchildren appear to have emotional or behavioral challenges and/or seem to be "stuck" in a younger developmental stage.

Because of their difficult histories, children living with grandparents may be likely to have attachment
concerns, developmental delays and/or behavioral problems. These concerns can lead to health, school, social, and family problems. For grandparents, caring for a child with challenges can be physically, emotionally and financially draining.

This presentation will focus on the attachment relationship between the grandparent and grandchild. It is through the attachment relationship that children learn how to “self-regulate”, soothe themselves (e.g. when they are upset, or be able to get to sleep, etc.), manage strong feelings, ask for help when needed, respond effectively to stress, be aware of their own needs, develop self-awareness, as well as many other essential life and relationship skills.

As we will discuss, developing a healthy attachment
relationship is critical for brain development, the ability to learn, and ability to relate to and appropriately interact with others.
We will discuss the impacts of “breaks in attachment” for these grandchildren and how being raised by their grandparent(s) can help them learn to trust, securely attach, and therefore support their emotional, educational, physical and social development. We will discuss specific ways to support and enhance the attachment relationship. We will also focus on the Grandparents own self-care.

The Grandparents who attend will decide how much of the presentation will be interactive and Q & A, and how much informational in content. It will be relaxed, informative, interactive, and playful.

Kristen Hilmoe, M.Ed., R.C.C., R.P.T., C.P.T.
Child and Family Therapist
Registered Clinical Counsellor
Registered Play Therapist (APT)
Certified Child Psychotherapist and Play Therapist (CACPT)

Please register with Sandi Halvorson, Program Coordinator, Parent Support Services Society of BC by April 16th
Phone 250 -468-9658 or email

We acknowledge the financial support of the Province of British Columbia and United Way Central and Northern Vancouver Island

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Interview

Jane Bouey of Media Mornings interviews Vanessa Iafolla about Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, the financial challenges they face, and her groundbreaking research.

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Advocacy

Grandparents raising grandchildren (GRG) face an number of barriers. Financial barriers they face are exacerbated by policy such as inadequate kinship care benefits and the loss of CPP Disability Benefits upon turning 65.

We encourage advocacy in these areas. For more information check out the documents below.

An example of a letter regarding kinship care benefits.

Information sheet on kinship care benefits.

Information sheet on CPP Disability.

GRG Resources

Information regarding resources for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren can be found here: