One of the things I look forward to each month during school Term Time is our local SNUG get together. You can read more about this in the blog entitled Stafford Meet Up Group.
When I came up with the idea of a Grandparent support group it was with the intention of getting to know other Grandparents of Special Needs Grandchildren within my local area. Since then of course things have progressed in a way that I never imagined as Grandparents worldwide have joined via our closed Facebook page (LINK TO FACEBOOK GROUP) and its lovely to be able to share information and offer support when needed to so many Grandparents in similar circumstances.
Although social media can be an ideal way to bring people together,actually sitting with someone and being able to have a conversation face to face can have a lot of advantages.
Lets start first of all by looking at some of the benefits meeting up with others can bring;
1. You can reach Grandparents who do not use social media. There are plenty of Grandparents who do not use Facebook ( my Husband being one of them) and yet they would love to meet up with others in similar position and local to them. Although there are a couple of members in our local group who are also members of the Facebook page the majority are not.
2. You can share local information on schools, playgroups etc.
3. You can form new friendships and do not feel as if you are on your own
I could go on, but what better way to illustrate than by quoting a couple of remarks made our local members when asked to comment on what SNUG meetings meant to them
“Somewhere to find sympathetic, listening ears. People who understand your situation because of their own. Kindness-Humour-Advice-Encouragement. So thankful to be part of it”
“Sharing of ideas, experience-informal conversation concerning the development/problems/solutions of day to day life with special needs Grandchildren has proved to be an invaluable asset”
“I feel that I am not alone. There are many more people of my age who have the same worries, concerns as me.”
If you would like to help spread the word about SNUG (Special Needs United Grandparents) in your area and would like to form a local meet up group then please get in touch. I have put together an information sheet which might help you get started and which contains important information MEETING GROUP GUIDLINES
If you do decide that you want to form a group in your local area (regardless of country) then please get in touch via email@example.com and let me have the details. This will enable me to advertise your group when formed on this site and also our Facebook page.
If you want to be notified if (or when) there is a local group near to you then again please get in touch via email so that I can keep you updated.
**As explained in the leaflet, SNUG (Special Needs United Grandparents) is a voluntary support group not a recognised charity or body. Everything that is done within the group is done voluntarily and anyone willing to organise a get together should keep that in mind as no expenses can be claimed from SNUG (Special Needs United Grandparents) or it’s members.