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Relative Caregiver Program helps keep kids out of Tennessee’s foster system


Nearly one in 10 Tennessee children are being raised by their grandparents, according to the Tennessee Commission on Children & Youth.

“Most have already raised their children and now they’re raising a second set of children, and sometimes there are challenges that they were not expecting,” said Rhonda Ferguson, family advocate counselor with the Shelby County Relative Caregiver Program.

The program was established in 2001 at the Center on Developmental Disabilities at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center after employees noticed many of the children served lived with relatives other than their parents.

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