West Virginia State University Social Worker Appointed to National Council Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Contact: Jack Bailey
(304) 766-4109
August 6, 2019
West Virginia State University Social Worker Appointed to National Council Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
INSTITUTE, W.Va. –West Virginia State University’s (WVSU) Lead Social Worker Yvonne Lee has been appointed to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Advisory Council to Support Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, a three-year term.

Lee is one of the coordinators of the WVSU Healthy Grandfamilies program, which provides education, information, support and social work services to grandparents in West Virginia who are raising one or more of their grandchildren. The program, which has served hundreds of grandparents and grandchildren, began in Kanawha County and recently received state funding to expand into all 55 counties in the state and establish a Center for Excellence on the WVSU campus in Institute. 

“I am honored to have received this appointment,” Lee said. “It will allow me to work on a level with scholars to assist in fixing an issue so near and dear to my heart. Given this opportunity, I hope to accomplish policy change to help support such a vulnerable population that deserves the support of government.”

West Virginia’s rate of grandparents providing care to grandchildren has grown in recent years, with the state tied for second in the nation of the prevalence of grandfamilies, a family situation often tied to the impact of the opioid crisis. 

The objective of the Advisory Council to Support Grandparents Raising Grandchildren is to identify, promote, coordinate and disseminate to the public information, resources and best practices available to help grandparents and other older relatives meet the health, educational, nutritional and other needs of the children in their care and maintain their own physical and mental health and emotional well-being. In carrying out these duties, the Advisory Council also considers the needs of those affected by the opioid crisis, as well as the needs of members of Native American Tribes.

Lee’s appointment to the Advisory Council is effective immediately.

To learn more about WVSU Healthy Grandfamilies, visit healthygrandfamilies.com.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multigenerational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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