Janice (Jan) Standen is president of the volunteer-run charity organisation, Grandparents Rearing Grandchildren WA (GRGWA). In this role, she advocates passionately for grandparent carers – a crucial but often ignored community in Australia.
Jan joined GRGWA in 2013 when her three grandchildren came to live with her. She knows the day-to-day battles that grandparents experience as primary carers, having lived them herself.
Against significant obstacles, Jan has driven the rapid expansion of GRGWA. She created a structure for the organisation and secured a fit-for-purpose premise, raising GRGWA’s profile and increasing membership and outreach by more than 40%.
More than two-thirds of grandparent carers live in poverty. So under Jan’s stewardship, GRGWA offers free legal and counselling support, a food bank pick-up centre, a donations distribution service and an op shop providing free clothing and toys. GRGWA also connects new grandparent carers to services and community.
Authentic, passionate and egalitarian, Jan has made an outstanding contribution to the Western Australian community.