|NEW ZEALAND'S EDUCATION
A group of concerned Grandparents whose role is the primary caregiver of their grandchildren found that their situation was unique and stressful. They subsequently formed the Parenting Second Time Around to facilitate: - Support - Action -Research There are significant numbers of grandparents raising their grandchildren as the primary caregiver. The grandparents take on the responsibility for these children because of the severe social, emotional and psychological problems experienced by their own adult children or partners, which have put their grandchildren at risk. These problems include: - mental Illness - substance abuse - domestic violence - neglect - abandonment This means that the parenting role is more difficult and complex than usual. Many of the Children are traumatised and behaviourally disturbed because of their experiences; some have special learning needs or need counselling or psychiatric support themselves. The birth parents are frequently disturbed or mentally unstable and relationships between the parents and adult child(ren) are frequently antagonistic and sometimes violent. Some grandparents live in fear of attack and abuse. These grandparents take on the role out of love and concern for the two generations of children involved. However, the role of 'grandparent as caregiver' in these situations has particular stresses and responsibilities.