Kinship (formerly Grandparents Plus)
Kinship (formerly Grandparents Plus) is the national charity (England and Wales) which advice and support grandparents and the wider family especially when they take on the caring role of children in difficult family circumstances.
Kinship care is when a child lives full-time or most of the time with a relative or friend who isn’t their parent, usually because their parents aren’t able to care for them. That relative or friend is called a ‘kinship carer’, and it’s estimated that around half of kinship carers are grandparents, but many other relatives including older siblings, aunts, uncles, as well as family friends and neighbours can also be kinship carers.
We use our experience, expertise and strength to change lives. We support kinship carers in their homes and communities, giving advice and helping them work through problems to find the best way forward.
We connect carers together in our national community and network of local support groups, so they don’t have to face the fight alone.
We help professionals understand kinship families and improve support for them. And through our research and campaigns we make sure kinship care is understood and government knows what changes are needed.
Our Advice Service helps kinship carers in crisis to make difficult decisions. Our experienced advisers help kinship carers with their questions on benefits, employment, housing, education, grant applications – and often a shoulder to cry on too.
There are lots of different types of kinship care, and if you’re a kinship carer, you might find that as circumstances change the type of kinship carer you are changes too.
Kinship care includes children who may be:
- living in an informal arrangement made by their parents
- ‘looked after’ by the local authority and placed with kinship foster carers
- on a Child Arrangements Order or Special Guardianship Order.
We help kinship carers through: