Youth Port is a gateway to resources, information, and tools for young adults who are currently experiencing foster care, those who are transitioning to adulthood, and those who have aged-out.
Did you hear? NRCYD's 2014 National Pathways to Adulthood: A Convening on Youth in Transition will be held August 6-8, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Our 'Call for Presenters' is now open too, you can learn more at our convening's website at: http://nrcyd.ou.edu/np14-call.
Several months ago the National Resource Center for Youth Development (NRCYD) decided to give states the opportunity to highlight programs and services they were providing to youth which they considered successful. We also wanted to create a product that the state could use to bring attention to those programs and services. We are pleased to offer everyone a resource we call our State Spotlight.
Over the next year, we will continue to present an NRCYD-State Spotlight every few weeks, highlighting what states are doing for youth in the child welfare systems across the country.
Here are some opportunities we have tracked down that are exclusively for young leaders:
•The FosterClub All-Star Internship program applications are due on February 15th. The FosterClub All-Stars are a team of young people age 18-24 who are selected to serve as summer interns with FosterClub and assist in planning and facilitating Independent Living Teen Conferences and other foster care and child welfare events held throughout the country. All applicants must have spent time in the foster care system.
•The Foster Care to Success Scholarship (FC2S) application for 2014-15 is now open. The application closes on March 31, 2014. Recipients and non-recipients will be notified via email to the email address from which they applied, by the end of June 2014.
•The 2014 Summit Scholarship Application for Young Leaders - America's Promise Alliance is offering youth scholarships for young people working with their peers to end the dropout crisis to attend the Building a GradNation Summit in Washington, DC in March.
From the Field: Announcements
These are resources and opportunities for professionals, youth, and families by fellow professionals and alumni of foster care.
As you are likely aware, the Affordable Care Act will be fully implemented starting January 1, 2014. This means youth who have recently aged out of foster care (<26 yrs. old) will be eligible for Medicaid. However, it is unclear how this population will be notified that they qualify for this important health coverage, now that they are no longer connected to the child welfare system. To help spread the word, the American Academy of Pediatrics has created a web badge that organizations, agencies, and other stakeholders can post to their website. The hope is that these young adults will click on the web badge that will take them to more information where they are encouraged to sign up for Medicaid. The web badge links to www.aap.org/alumnihealth.
You can help by posting the web badge to your website, sending an email distribution list, posting it on social media platforms (i.e., Facebook), and/or printing it out and posting at sites where alumni might see it.
The Center for the Study of Social Policy (CSSP) recently announced the winners of its national search to identify initiatives making a critical difference in the lives of youth who are in foster care or involved with child welfare systems. Learn more about the fifteen exemplary programs local, state, and national youth and family serving programs that exemplify CSSP's Youth Thrive™ framework.
The Children's Bureau Express (CBX) offers monthly alerts with topical resources and tools for the child welfare field. Check out the January and February editions that focus on:
NRCYD has also found a few other great websites that include youth, family, and voices from the child welfare field:
• Youth Speak out
• "Youth Voices" comes to you by Find Youth Info.gov
• "Foster Focus Magazine"
Understanding Foster Care
The foster care system is complicated and can be confusing. This section includes descriptions of the types of care and services available within the child welfare system.
The Center for the Study on Social Policy recently released a brief on The Affordable Care Act and implications for youth aging out of foster care.
There is a lot of work being done around understanding and implementing the Extension of Federal Foster Care, here are some links to assist you in learning right along with us.
Some of our favorite sites to stay in the know with current happenings in child welfare are:
•The Administration for Children & Families
•The Children's Bureau
•The Child Welfare Information Gateway
•Find Youth Info.gov
•National Youth In Transition Database (NYTD): From the National Child Welfare Resource Center for Data and Technology (NRC-CWDT)
•NRCYD State-by-State pages
Permanency & Connections
At NRCYD we believe that you can never have too many meaningful connections. Here are some resources highlighting the importance of permanent connections.
get R.E.A.L. is a newly formed campaign with the goal to "improve the healthy sexual and identity development for all children and youth in the child welfare system."
Other organizations that help support opportunities or have resources to promote permanent connections are:
- Big Brothers Big Sisters
- Camp to Belong
- Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute
- Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA)
- Foster Care Alumni of America
- Foster Care to Success
- Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative
- The National Foster Youth Action Network (NFYAN)
- Spark Action
- Youth MOVE National
Help Us Build Youth Port!
Editor: Lupe O-Tovar