Tara and Lynn Urvina

Tara Urvina talks to her adoptive mother, Lynn Urvina, who is her biological grandmother, about being a kinship family and the garden she planted during COVID-19. Lynn talks about her motivation to begin work in kinship advocacy.

Lynn: So do you think that your life is better because you’ve been raised by your grandparents? Or how is it different than maybe some of your friends who were raised with younger parents?

Tara: My life is definitely better since living with you guys, my grandparents because I know that I would not have been in a safe situation if I had stayed with my biological parents. And it’s been clear with my other siblings who have lived with them longer than I have and they weren’t safe. And so I’m glad to be safe.

Lynn: Well we’re glad that we could keep you safe. That was the whole reason that we took you in when you were little. And it’s been 15, little over 15 years, so most of your life. Most of your life. And it’s… When people ask me about my job and I tell him I’m a kinship navigator, if they know what that is, I tell them I work with people raising grandchildren. And I like to tell them that I am one of those people. And that you’re the reason that that’s what I do.

Tara: I’m the reason you have the job you have.

Lynn: So what are some of the things that you’ll look back on and think were good about this interesting time in our lives?

Tara: Our COVID garden. I love our little garden we’ve created in the front yard and spent all the time picking out the plants and spending the time, putting them in pots and watering them and making sure they’re healthy. And then finding more projects to plant more plants in other places in the yard in front and back.

Lynn: We hadn’t done a lot in our yard for a little while. It was looking a little bit sad and it looks much better now. And that has been fun to work on that. And we found some interesting plants that neither of us have really had before. And so that’s been fun.


This segment was produced by StoryCorps, a non-profit whose mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world.

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