The Issue: Unemployment Among Youth Exiting Foster Care
The approximately 30,000 teens who age of out foster care every year face a disproportionate risk for going to prison or becoming homeless, according to a report by National Public Radio. Nearly 25% experience homelessness, and 60% of males have been convicted of a crime. Fewer than half of young adults who age out of foster care find steady employment by age 24, and only 6% hold two- or four-year degrees.
The Campaign: Funding Life Skills Classes for Teens
If this Grassroots campaign raises $500, then Forward Steps can fund two months of life skills classes for two young adults aging out of foster care. Each additional $250 raised will fund another month of life-skills classes for one program participant.
Forward Steps' life-skills classes teach young people who are aging out of foster care about financial literacy, time management, nutrition and cooking, and resumé development. The classes also partner participants with alumni who have achieved successful careers after living in foster care. The classes meet twice weekly and the youths also meet with a therapist and social worker for two hours each week.
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Forward Steps support teens transitioning out of foster care with housing, support services, and life-skills classes in financial literacy, resumé building, and nutrition. The organization also focuses on community, providing its young clients with a place to live in a communal environment and connecting them with successful program alumni who share experiences similar to their own. While Forward Steps' clients are working toward self-sufficiency, it supplements their limited incomes with a monthly stipend and assistance in applying for financial aid and scholarships.