Editorial: Couple deserve praise

By Michele Hunter

The teenage years seem to be among the most talked about stages for Kiwi parents - and not usually for good reasons.

Which is why I have so much respect for former Rotorua couple Kahu and Robin Grace who moved to Tauranga last week to be caregivers in a newly re-opened Child, Youth and Family home for teenage boys.

After raising their own children, these amazing grandparents are now taking on the enormous challenge of providing a caring, supportive home for up to six boys at a time, aged 10 to 15, who cannot live in their own home environments.

While most people in the Graces' position are enjoying the freedom and quieter lifestyle that comes with children having flown the coop, these two are taking on the role of caring for boys at one or the most difficult ages and stages in life.

The couple has been attending training programmes since February leading up to their move into the newly-renovated Avenues home that could provide a life-saving sanctuary for children in need.

The thing that stood out most about their approach to the job was the fact they planned to show the boys the kind of happy home they may never have experienced before.

As well as good meals, a safe environment and a listening ear Mrs Grace told the Bay of Plenty Times it would be good for the boys to see the relationship she and her husband shared, so they knew how a functioning, loving relationship worked.

In some of their most influential years when they are growing into young men witnessing this kind of togetherness could be the one thing that puts them and their future relationships on the right path.

The Graces' are providing such a valuable and potentially life changing service in our community. I hope they receive all the support they deserve.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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