Document Type


Publication Date



child abuse, neglect, grandparents, social work


Grandparents need support to take on the responsibility of children whose parents cannot care for them due to drug addiction, mental health issues, HIV illness, or other health problems. Without support and assistance, these families and children are likely to end up enmeshed in the already overburdened child abuse and neglect system. The University of Maryland has created a model program providing social work and legal services to at-risk grandparent families to help avoid the unnecessary placement of these chldren in foster care. In this new program, student attorneys and student social workers worked witn the grandparent client to help stabilize the family, providing representation or advice on housing, public benefits, custody, and school-related issues. Joint education of student attorneys and student social workers in a clinical experience enhances their understanding of their roles and those of the other profession and prepares them for a more thoughtful and informed approach to family law, child welfare cases, and at-risk children.

Publication Citation

60 Juvenile and Family Court Journal 24 (2009).


Family Law

Included in

Family Law Commons