Kinship Care Corner

Relatives Raising Relative Children

What is Kinship Care?

Kinship care is any living arrangement in which a nonparent caregiver is caring for children who are related to or have a prior relationship with the caregiver without a parent. This arrangement can be ordered through the court system or an arrangement between the parents and relative.

How common is Kinship Care?

In Florida, 258,952 children live in grandparent-headed households (7.1% of all the children in the state). There are another 86,152 children living in households headed by other relatives (2.4% of all the children in the state).

Why did Kids Central start the Kinship Program?

Kids Central, with the help of a workgroup, identified services and service gaps for relative caregivers. After this discovery, Kids Central began the program to help families in all five counties-Marion, lake, Sumter, Citrus, and Hernando.

How are caregivers referred to the program?

Kinship families can be referred to the Kinship Program by anyone. The only requirement is that the relative child is residing with a relative or nonrelative caregiver and the parent is not living in the home.

The goal of the Kinship Program is to let you know You Are Not Alone.

Kinship Services

Support Groups

Each county served by the Kinship Program has a support group. The support groups run for eight weeks with short breaks in between each session. The groups offer fellowship with other relative caregivers, information on accessing assistance programs, an encouraging environment for discussing the challenges of being a relative caregiver. Each group offers complimentary childcare.

More Services

  • Advocacy
  • Resource Center
  • Legal Assistance
  • Family Finding
  • Education Liaison
  • Intergenerational Activities
  • Family Team Conferencing
  • Holiday and Back to School assistance

For more information, please contact Tawnya Drent at or call 352-873-6332.




Pursuant to Section 286.26, Florida Statutes, any disabled person who may require accommodations to participate in any meetings or events, please contact Debra Wise-Velez or Shelly LaFrance with Kids Central at (352) 873-6332 at least 7 days in advance of the event.  If you are hearing or speech impaired, please use the Florida Relay Service 1-800-955-8771 (TDD) or 1-800-955-8770 (Voice).

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