ST. CLOUD - The chance to work with children, teach them new skills and give back to the community is why Carol Theisen and Sister Joyce Piotrowski volunteer as foster grandparents.

The Foster Grandparent Program through Catholic Charities gives those over the age of 55 the opportunity to work in the classroom with students in area schools. "Grandmas" and "Grandpas" help students with daily lessons in all subjects.

"Grandma" Carol Theisen volunteers in Mrs. Hoons' kindergarten class at All Saints Academy. She helps students learn how to write both upper and lower case letters and perform beginning kindergarten math skills.

Since retiring Theisen has been volunteering in the classroom. She says it brings her joy to see the children get so excited about learning.

"It's just awesome when you can see them [students] make some strides or to get something correct and to have them say 'Grandma can you help me.' " -Theisen

Besides volunteering Theisen enjoys sewing, gardening and traveling.

Volunteers in this program come from different backgrounds. Theisen retired from working in the retail field and another volunteer, Sister Joyce Piotrowski is a retired elementary school teacher.

Piotrowski also volunteers at All Saints Academy, she jumps around from working with the kindergartners to the 2nd graders. Piotrowski loves to play games such as scrabble with the kids so they can learn and have fun at the same time.

In her free time Piotrowski loves crocheting, reading and doing puzzles.

Chrissy Gaetke, WJON