WHAT WE DO

We Support Foster Youth as They Learn to Support Themselves

First Place for Youth Drives System Change to Remove Barriers for Foster Youth as they Enter Adulthood

We offer transition-age youth the programs they need today while influencing the laws, ideas, and policy that will impact future generations of foster youth for years to come.

PROGRAMS

Evidence-informed programming that supports foster youth transitioning into adulthood

DATA & EVALUATION

Learning from our work to deliver effective programs, innovate, and share our findings

POLICY

Addressing systemic barriers faced by foster youth through systems change

NETWORK PARTNERSHIPS

Building understanding and partnerships for systems change and program delivery

The Need

Youth transitioning out of foster care represent one of the most marginalized populations in the country. At risk of intergenerational cycles of poverty, they are highly vulnerable to homelessness, unemployment, incarceration, the challenges of early parenthood, and dropping out of school. By the age of 23, many fail to complete critical educational and employment rites of passage that establish independence and future success:

25% of CA foster youth surveyed were homeless between the ages of 18 and 20.*

More than half of those surveyed did not graduate from high school on time.

Only 11% of California foster youth complete an AA or BA, while 88% said they’d like to.

55% of California foster youth surveyed at age 23 were currently working.

Female

6% General Population

43% Foster Youth

Male

23% General Population

74% Foster Youth

Incarceration Rates

Nearly 43% of female and 74% of male foster youth will have been incarcerated, compared to 6% and 23% of their peers.

Female

41% General Population

70% Foster Youth

Male

28% General Population

50% Foster Youth

Becoming a parent

Over 70% of female and 50% of male foster youth will be parents, compared to 41% and 28% of their peers.

(Sources: California Dept. of Education, CalYOUTH Transitions to Adutlhood Study, 2021)

The Solution for Foster Youth

HOW WE DO IT

Over the years, First Place for Youth has come to recognize that through a combined effort of programming, policy work, rigorous evaluation, and smart partnerships, we can create the most effective swell of support for young adults exiting foster care.

WHAT WE DO IT WITH

In order to be effective for our young people, we understand the critical importance of understanding “what’s working” and what’s not. By leveraging our Youth Roadmap Tool and gaining these data-driven insights, First Place has identified four key support zones that make the biggest impact for transition-age foster youth. These building blocks of our programming focus on:

  • HOUSING
  • EMPLOYMENT
  • EDUCATION
  • SOCIAL / EMOTIONAL SUPPORTS

We help network partner organizations change systems and deliver programs to better serve foster youth across the U.S.

What’s Happening at First Place for Youth

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