paa logo

There's a very special program that enables men and women over the age of 55 to be able to provide encouragement to children, be a mentor, tutor, story teller, and more. This program is the Foster Grandparent Program which was established in 1965 by the Federal Government and is part of AmeriCorps. For volunteers who meet certain criteria, they may be able to receive an hourly stipend and assistance with the cost of transportation.

For several years, the Piedmont Agency on Aging, which is headquartered in Greenwood, has sponsored the Foster Grandparent Program in Laurens County where volunteers have worked assisting students in schools, government programs, and non-profit organizations. The agency recently received a grant from AmeriCorps to have the Foster Grandparent Program be implemented in the rest of the counties the agency serves - Abbeville, Greenwood, and Saluda Counties.

Piedmont Agency on Aging feels that the Foster Grandparent Program will be very beneficial to schools and Head Start programs. Foster Grandparent volunteers can assist a teacher to help young students learn colors and shapes or help older students with math and reading. Also, the Foster Grandparent can help reinforce lessons taught by the teacher while providing encouragement and praise to a student which will help to improve their self-esteem.

Every candidate for the Foster Grandparent Program must submit an application with references and go through an interview process. Each one has to pass a background check. Each applicant will be fingerprinted and have a background check with SLED, the FBI, and the National Sex Offender Registry before they can be a part of the program. 

Piedmont Agency on Aging hopes that you will want to volunteer and be a part of this successful program. For over 50 years, thousands of volunteers across America have participated in the Foster Grandparent Program helping students in various ways. We are delighted to sponsor this program where an older generation of volunteers can assist children - who will be the hope for the future. 

For more information about the program, contact Don Goforth, the Director of the Foster Grandparent Program at 864-223-0164, ext. 223 or by email at: