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Fun Facts and History of Grandparents Day

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Fun Facts and History of Grandparents Day Bruce Laurance/Getty Images

When to Observe Grandparents Day:

Grandparents Day is celebrated on the first Sunday after Labor Day in the U.S.

Origin of Grandparents Day:

A West Virginia grandmother, Marian McQuade of Fayette County, campaigned for a national holiday to honor grandparents. U.S. President Jimmy Carter in 1978 signed a presidential proclamation making it official. The first Grandparents Day was observed on Sept. 9, 1979.

Grandparents as Caregivers:

Millions of grandparents take on the responsibility of raising two generations, by being the primary caregivers for their grandchildren.

  • 6.1 million grandparents share their homes with their grandchildren younger than 18.
  • 2.5 million grandparents are responsible for one or more of the basic needs of a grandchild who lives with them, such as food, shelter, or clothing. 1.6 million are grandmothers and 896,000 are grandfathers.
  • Of the grandparents who provide a basic need, 1.4 million work, 477,000 earn income below the poverty line, and 730,000 have a disability.

Children Who Live With Their Grandparents:

  • 5.7 million children live with a grandparent, about 8 percent of all U.S. children. Of these, 3.7 million live in the grandparent’s home.
  • 30% of children younger than 5 with working moms were cared for by a grandparent on a regular basis during their mother's work hours.

Source: the U.S. Census Bureau

For more fun facts about the holidays, check out the About Working Moms calendar of holiday facts.

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