Since 1965, Senior Corps, a branch of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) that connects people age 55 and older with volunteer opportunities, has operated its foster grandparents program, through which retired volunteers mentor and support some of the most vulnerable children in America. More than 31,000 people currently serve approximately 262,000 kids in the program, helping children learn to read, providing one-on-one tutoring and giving general guidance.
Foster grandparents serve from 15 to 40 hours a week. They typically work individually with kids at schools, hospitals, drug treatment centers, correctional facilities and child care centers. In exchange for their service, foster grandparents receive pre-service and continued training, transportation reimbursement and supplemental accident and liability insurance while on duty. Additionally, foster grandparent participants are eligible for a small, tax-free stipend [source: Senior Corps].