(This article originally appeared on Crosscut and has been reprinted with permission.)
For kinship caregivers raising another family member’s children, state support lags behind assistance for foster parents.
by Dorothy Edwards
At ages 69 and 71, Sadie Pimpleton and Gloria Johnson are both well into retirement. But instead of relaxing, the sisters are raising their grandchildren as their own.
Johnson is caring for two grandchildren, while Pimpleton is providing a home to three, including a 6-month-old. It is challenging, they say, but Pimpleton and Johnson have always counted on each other for support.
“I guess we are like each others right hand,” Pimpleton said.
The challenges grew in 2014 after Pimpleton’s husband of 43 years passed away, leaving her in a state of depression.
“Even though I had the grandkids, I would stay in and not go anywhere,” Pimpleton said.
It was during this low point that the family met Alesia Cannady and learned about her support group for grandparents raising their grandkids. Soon the sisters were attending a regular meetup called Pepper Pot, which was run by Cannady’s nonprofit Women United Seattle, mostly out of her Skyway home.