Grandparents raising their grandchildren are getting some much-needed help as a donation drive is being held, hoping to help with school supplies.
"These are older adults who have now been raising a family a second time around, so there's always a financial burden," says Patricia Dominguez, director of Kinship Care Services at Duet.
This summer, Duet, a nonprofit that helps promote health and well-being through needed services to homebound adults, family caregivers, and grand families, is looking to equip 150 grandchildren with school supplies and clothing to make sure they're ready for the next school year.
Dominguez says there are thousands of grandparents in Arizona raising their grandchildren for various reasons.
"The top three reasons we are seeing we are seeing is substance abuse, incarceration, and mental illness. There's domestic violence, teen pregnancy, deportation, and sometimes death," she explained.
One of the grandparents benefiting from this school supply drive is Cecilia Martinez. She's been raising her 15-year-old granddaughter since she was born.
"It's been a struggle, but a blessing to be able to take care of my granddaughter," Martinez said, and with this help from Duet, she can focus on other challenges.
"You have to make a lot of adjustments. I know you have to be out, and it's hard being a grandparent and being the parent and I have to talk to her about that all the time, especially now that she's a teenager," she said.
How can you help? The organization is looking for backpacks, clothing, and gift cards.
The easiest way to get involved is to go to Duet's Amazon wishlist. Donations can also be dropped off at the Duet offices.
The drive runs through July 8.
More information can be found here: https://duetaz.org/