Youth Aging Out of Foster Care: Challenges and Opportunities

Currently there are over 365,000 children and youth in foster care. What’s more, tens of thousands of youth age out of the foster care system every year. These young individuals will face many challenges like unstable housing, limited education, unemployment, and social connections. Sadly, these setbacks determine their short term and log range futures. In short, they need access to funding, supplies, and human support. As a result, GrantWatch is stepping up. Our grant lists open for grant applications for youth aging out of foster care. These grants help organizations cover salaries, provide healthy food, and even fund housing for young adults who have aged out of foster care. Read more to learn how to apply for funding.

Challenges Faced By Youth Aging Out of Foster Care

Research shows that young adults formerly in foster care can become at risk for suicide, criminal behavior, and homelessness. However, programs are available for youth aging out of foster care. To illustrate, the Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 provides a forecast for programs to be developed by the federal government. After this many other organizations started building impactful programs for youth aging out of foster care. These critical programs support those aging out of foster care and help them to become self-sufficient adults.

In talking with young people who have experienced the foster care system firsthand, I’ve heard consistently how challenging it is to transition out of foster care, especially without the appropriate support. Giving young people the resources they need to succeed as adults begins during their time in care. It is crucial that we use that time to engage young people in case planning, help them build and nurture important relationships, and gain equitable access to the opportunities that all young people deserve.

Child Welfare Information Gateway

Helpful Resources For Youth Aging Out of Foster Care

Are you an individual aging out of foster care? As mentioned above, the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program provides support for obtaining a high school diploma, vocational training, job placement, physical and mental health assistance, substance abuse rehabilitation, housing, and more. You deserve to have a bright future. Do not let your past define you. Find the support you need to follow your dreams. Below are helpful resources for those aging out of foster care.

  1. Know Your Rights Guide: Chapter 2 – Rights When You Are Placed in Foster Care – This outlines your rights, including the types of placements, how placements are made, and how to advocate for placement.
  2. Independent Living After Foster Care – Find programs that help young adults who have aged out of foster care smoothly transition into adulthood with a sense of normalcy and permanent connections. 
  3. Grants to Those Who Have Aged Out of Foster Care – Grants of up to $2,000 to individuals to assist young adults who are or were living in foster care for or for those who were discharged from foster care.
  4. Veterinary Expenses for Companion Animals – Support for veterinary expenses for companion animals. Funding is for urgent treatment for illnesses and injuries of animals of individuals in foster care, a foster home, or were local residents at the time of their placement.
  5. Educational and Housing Support – $1,000 to individuals for educational and housing support. Funding is intended to support adults who were once in foster care.

Grants For Organizations Helping Youth Aging Out of Foster Care  

Does your organization provide support for at-risk youth aging out of foster care? Sometimes funding is sparse. Applying for a grant can be daunting. However, there is help! Did you know? You can hire a grant writer to research and write grants for your organization. Below are grants to help you start help you get started with your grant search.

  1. Grants For Programs that Benefit Children In-Foster Care – Funding is intended to address basic needs, such as shelter, clothing, foster care, child abuse and neglect, developmental disabilities, education, homelessness, mental health, medical treatment, substance abuse, and other children’s charitable purposes.
  2. Funding for Programs for Children and Youth in Foster Care – Grants of up to $40,000 for organizations providing services to foster children, their families, and youth transitioning from foster care. Eligible programs should demonstrate excellence and impact in serving the children, youth, and caregivers involved in the state’s child welfare or child and adolescent mental health systems.
  3. Funding For Social Workers & Child Advocates Supporting Youth in Foster Care – Grants to provide necessities for youth in the foster care and court dependency system. Funding is intended for essential items such as school supplies, tutoring, clothing, eyeglasses, medical testing, and dental care.
  4. Educational and Housing Support – $1,000 to individuals for educational and housing. Funding supports adults who were once in foster care.
  5. Grants to USA Organizations to Promote Equality for At-Risk Youth – Specifically, this grant supports research projects that promote equality in youth outcomes. Proposals are welcome in the areas of justice, education, foster care, mental health, immigration, workforce development, prevention of child abuse and neglect, and more
  6.  Education, Family Support, Youth, Workforce, and Justice – Funding is intended for a range of activities that will break the poverty cycle for underserved communities, including those aging out of foster care.

The Success of Youth Aging Out of Foster Care Matters

The future our world depends on the health of our youth. Because of this, it critical to support our youth far beyond housing and food. By supporting our youth we are participating in building a brighter further or generations to come. Those aging out of foster care are a part of this group. Want to help? Find a reputable organization to offer your volunteer support. To illustrate, there are organizations encouraging young writers, provide mental health support and more. Be a part of the solution. Break the cycle!

About GrantWatch

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