The NSW Government is lending a hand to “grandcarers” across the Northern Rivers, ensuring the school age children they care for have the right support and materials when they head off to school.

The Back to School Program, which is run by the Northern Rivers Community Foundation (NRCF) in partnership with the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR), provides grandparents with vouchers that can be redeemed for items such as books, bags, stationery, shoes and uniforms.

Grandcarers are the unsung heroes in our community who elect to step up to parenting for a second time for children who could potentially otherwise end up in formal foster care” said John Callanan, who Chairs the NRCF. I am really grateful to our many donors and supporters who enable us to make a difference in the world of these older heroes.”

Parliamentary Secretary for Northern NSW Ben Franklin MLC said that this year the program had expanded with greater demand.  The NSW Government, along with FRRR, NRCF and the community have come together to provide support to ensure the program is fully funded.

“The Back to School program shows how regional communities work together to lend a helping hand and I applaud everyone involved,” Mr Franklin said.

“Education opens the door to so many opportunities later in life, which is why it is important that we support our ‘grandcarers’.

“The NSW Government is working hard to provide more classrooms across regional NSW and ensuring they’re equipped with the best resources and technology.”

“I strongly support this program, which has raised significant funds, and I am very pleased our Government has been able to assist,” Mr Franklin said.