We were recently made aware of a Care Community that surrounds a grandmother caring for her grandson via kinship care. Shortly after attending our clinic, a Columbus, IN church was eager to launch its first Care Community. At the Launch, the team learned they would be loving on three special people in the home – Great Grandmother, Grandmother, and Grandson. However, the day before the scheduled Meet & Greet, the grandson, home alone with his great grandmother, discovered that she had passed away. That evening, the Team Leader, having never met them, went to their home to sit with them in their grief. There she learned how she and the team could best serve them during their time of loss, and the team immediately took action. Perfect strangers, now community. Furthermore, nobody could’ve imagined the heartache Grandma and her sweet boy would endure again, when just a few months later the grandmother’s fiance passed away only weeks after being diagnosed with cancer.
When our advocates recently heard a portion of their story during the lunch panel at our February clinic, there was not a dry eye in the room. To listen to the family, the Team Leader, and the Care Community Coordinator share about the love and beautiful bond that has developed in their time of such deep pain was so powerful.
Furthermore, we heard that the young boy is doing far better in school, and loves when his Child Mentors pick him up from school each week to tutor and spend quality time with him. Prior to being connected with a Care Community, he was struggling in school academically and repeatedly had notes sent home from his teacher. But through the influence of his Care Community, everything has changed. He has thrived under the love and care of his Care Community; especially the men. His teacher is in disbelief of the changes in his attitude and actions.
They also shared that Grandma recently made soup and delivered it to her Team Leader during an illness, because she’s “nicer now” (her words, not ours – HA!), and she feels compelled each day to serve those around her because she has been served so well. Grandma said she looks forward to those afternoons as well, because, well, a hot cup of coffee in peace. Perhaps the best part? She and her sweet boy are now regularly attending church, and he insists that the Care Community sit in the same row as them – “together, as family”, he says.
Strangers, then Community, and now Family. “Forever”, they say…
Written By: Amy Jo Fox