Foster Grandparent Program Comes to an End at WCHOB

Updated: 6/17/2014
From L to R: Caroline Babb, Betty Crawford, Bessie Robinson and Maeoly Eatman, pose with their certificates of recognition for their many hours served in the Foster Grandparents Program.

For the past ten years, Catholic Charities of Buffalo has sponsored Foster Grandparents at Women & Children’s Hospital as part of the Foster Grandparent Program of Erie County.  The program offers seniors ages 55 and older opportunities to serve as mentors, tutors, and loving caregivers for children and youth with special needs.  The role of a Foster Grandparent is to establish one-to-one relationships, share experiences, skills and talents, and change young lives for the better.

Sadly, on June 13, 2014, the program’s funding source, Corporation for National and Community Service, changed its focus to serving the long term and measureable education needs of disadvantaged children – which does not include working in hospitals.  Therefore, the Hospital's six current Foster Grandparents have been released from the program.

Together, these six Foster Grandparents have contributed 45,520 hours to Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo:

Clarence Lark
Information Desk and Newspaper Delivery
Hours: 6,900
Start Date: 2006 

Bessie Robinson
Variety 4 and Epilepsy Monitoring Unit
Hours: 16,229
Start Date: 1989 

Caroline Babb
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Hours: 13,048
Start Date: 2005 

Ora Hamm
Information Desk and Admissions
Hours: 1,274
Start Date:  2012 

Betty Crawford
Emergency Department
Hours: 7,478
Start Date: 2008 

Maeoly Eatman

Variety 10
Hours: 1,411
Start Date: 2011

Five out of the six Foster Grandparents have chosen to remain on as regular volunteers 1-2 days per week.

A party was held at the hospital on the release date to honor and acknowledge their dedication to the program.  Each volunteer received a certificate of recognition for their hours served, as well as flowers and a gift certificate.  Please join us in celebrating these wonderful volunteers and thanking them for their service to Women & Children’s Hospital and our patients!