Independent Living/Transition to Adulthood

From the US DHHS/Administration for Children & Families, Children’s Bureau, and T&TA Network

Evidence- Based Practice, Research, and Reports

  • Highlights from State Reports to the National Youth in Transition Database, Federal Fiscal Year 2011
    This publication from the National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD) highlights national data from FFY 2011. It is the first in a series of briefs discussing new insights on youth in transition provided by NYTD. Data Brief #1 provides a national snapshot of transitioning youth, including information on over 98,000 youth who received independent living services paid for or provided by State agencies that administer the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program (CFCIP), as well as information on baseline outcomes reported by over 17,000 youth in foster care at age 17 in six areas. The six areas addressed are: financial self-sufficiency, educational attainment, connection with adults, homelessness, high-risk behaviors, and access to health insurance. (September 2012)
  • Coming of Age: Employment Outcomes for Youth Who Age Out of Foster Care Through Their Middle Twenties
    The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) requested this study to examine employment and earnings outcomes for youth, through their mid-twenties, who age out of foster care. The key question and focus of the study is whether foster youth catch up or continue to experience less employment and significantly lower earnings than their peers even into their mid-twenties. (Last Update 2008)

Resources & Publications

  • Helping Youth Transition to Adulthood: Guidance for Foster Parents
    The Child Welfare Information Gateway developed this publication which provides foster parents with guidance on how to help youth and emerging adults build a foundation for a successful transition to adult life outside of foster care. The first section provides background information on some of the unique challenges that youth in foster care face as they navigate their teenage years, and it includes information on brain development in young adults and programs that can help youth transition successfully to adulthood. The second part includes eight tip sheets that provide information and resources for foster parents on specific topics—such as money management, health care, and employment—so that they can better help youth prepare for independence. (April 2013)
  • Working With Youth to Develop a Transition Plan
    This factsheet from the Child Welfare Information Gateway is intended to help child welfare professionals and others who work with transitioning youth to understand the Federal legislative requirements for transition plans and partner with youth to develop a plan that builds on their strengths while supporting their needs. (January 2013)
  • Launch of the National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD): A Message from the Commissioner of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families
    Beginning in 2000, ACF initiated national consultations with State child welfare agencies, private agency youth service providers and current and former foster youth, to develop this data collection system. In 2008, this collaborative work culminated in the publication of the regulation implementing the data collection requirements of the Foster Care Independence Act; a reporting system we now know as the National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD). October 1, 2010 marked another important milestone in the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program, as it was the official start of NYTD data collection, as described in this message from Commissioner Bryan Samuels. (2010)
  • Keep in Touch: Online Tool for Transitioning Youth
    Keep in Touch, a publication developed for the US DHHS/ACF’s National Clearinghouse on Families & Youth, brings the true stories of three formerly homeless young people to participants in your transitional or independent living program. Each young person gives practical tips about how to stay connected, get support and live a successful adult life. Youth new to your transitional or independent living program will get an idea of what to expect. Youth leaving or graduating from your program will be encouraged to stay in touch and ask for help when they need it.

Webinars, Webcasts, and Videos

  • Supporting Youth in Transition: Importance of Caseworker Visits
    This webinar was organized by the Children’s Bureau, National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC), and National Resource Center for Youth Development (NRCYD) as part of National Foster Care Month. It offered information about the importance of quality caseworker visits as a tool for supporting youth in foster care during times of transition. Gail Collins, Director of the Children’s Bureau’s Division of Program Implementation, and Sylvia Kim, Child Welfare Program Specialist, Children’s Bureau, provided a foundational overview of the importance of caseworker visits, discussing information on caseworker visit requirements based in Federal policy, as well as sharing available data on caseworker visits. Their presentation included an overview of caseworker data trends, as well as CFSR caseworker visit findings and implications. Ollie Hernandez and Richard DeMarko Brown from the YATTA (Young Adult Training and Technical Assistance) Network outlined concrete ways that caseworker visits can be an effective tool for supporting youth in transition, provided practice tips, and shared information about how caseworkers can establish a positive relationship with youth in care. Matthew Hudson, NRCYD Program Development Specialist, discussed the development, implementation, and utilization of the “Preparing for Caseworker Visits Monthly Individual Contact Form and FAQs”. (May 7, 2013)
  • Digital Stories: Supporting Youth in Transition
    As part of National Foster Care Month 2013, NRCPFC developed new digital stories around the theme of Supporting Youth in Transition. Stories were created in Maine in partnership with the University of Southern Maine, Muskie School of Public Service, Youth and Community Engagement Programs and in Massachusetts in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families. (May 2013)

From Collaborating Organizations

Evidence-Based Practice, Research, and Reports

  • More is Possible: An Interactive Report on My First Place, a Program of First Place for Youth
    First Place for Youth was founded in 1998 to equip transition age foster youth with resources to help them become successful adults. To date, First Place for Youth has served over 2,000 youth across California. My First Place, a First Place for Youth transition program, couples stable housing with guidance to achieve critical milestones in employment, education, and healthy living. In My First Place's report, key findings from this initial study indicate: (1) Creating instrumental relationships with supportive staff is essential; (2) Data-driven culture promotes real-time improvement; (3) Strong partnerships are essential for effective educational and employment services; (4) “High level” expectations make the program work; and (5) Preparing youth for staff changes is critical given the strong bonds that are created.
  • Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth
    This report from Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago presents the first two waves of findings from the Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth, a longitudinal study of youth aging out of foster care and transitioning to adulthood in Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois. The study is based on survey data that will be collected at three points in time from a sample of youth who were in foster care for at least one year prior to their 16th birthday. The majority of these youth were placed in the care of the state child welfare system due to abuse and neglect.  (2011)
  • Employment Needs of Foster Youth in Illinois: Findings from the Midwest Study
    The limited research that has been done on young adults who "aged out" of foster care has found that their labor market outcomes are generally quite poor. This Chapin Hall study by Amy Dworsky and Judy Havlicek describes what Illinois young people said about their current and prior participation in the labor force, including work-related training or services they received. (2010)
  • Factors, Characteristics, and Practices Related to Former Foster Youth and Independent Living Programs: A Literature Review
    It has been well documented that former foster youth are at a distinct disadvantage in early adulthood in the areas of education, housing, employment, economics, and health. This report prepared by Northern California Training Academy and sponsored by California Department of Social Services reviews the literature on the transition out of the foster care system to independent living. Independent Living Programs (ILPs) have been found to contribute to independence for some former foster youth. However, many limitations have been noted. One suggested approach to administering ILPs is to consider individual differences and design programs using a person-centered approach. Multiple studies suggest that enrollment in ILPs should commence as early as possible as many youth exit the system without the benefit of ILP experiences. Overall, the most common recommendation is to foster and encourage mentor relationships for youth during the transition to independent living and to provide extended aftercare services as necessary. Recommendations for future research are discussed. (June 2009)
  • Aging Out of Foster Care: Towards a Universal Safety Net for Former Foster Youth
    This article by Melinda Atkinson, in the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, identifies the specific needs and outcomes of youths who age out under current foster care policies. The article also provides an extensive review of research and legal findings and precedents, as well as policy analysis, and an overview of state programs which continue support for foster youth to age 21. The article argues for adoption of legislation and policy changes to better support transition-age foster youth. (2008)
  • Youth Transitioning From Foster Care: Background, Federal Programs, and Issues for Congress
    This Congressional Research Service report begins with a discussion of the characteristics of older foster youth in care and the types of outcomes experienced by youth who have recently emancipated. It provides an overview of the federal foster care system, including the Chafee Foster Care Independence program, and provisions in federal foster care law that are intended to help prepare youth for adulthood. It discusses other federal support for youth aging out of care in the areas of education, health care, employment, and housing; examines how states vary in their approaches to serving older youth in care and those who are recently emancipated. Appendices include a summary of outcome statistics for youth who were in foster care, compared to youth in the general population and a summary of state policies regarding youth remaining in care beyond age 18. (2008)
  • Homelessness and Health Care Access After Emancipation: Results From the Midwest Evaluation of Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth
    Among 345 emancipated participants in this study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 14.2% experienced homelessness and 39.4% were unstably housed. Homelessness was associated with being uninsured and having unmet need for health care. Housing status was not associated with reporting fair or poor health at follow-up or, among women, with having had a pregnancy. Conclusion: Having had an episode of homelessness after emancipation is associated with worse health access, but not worse outcomes, among youth emancipated from foster care. (2007)
  • Health Care for Adolescents and Young Adults Leaving Foster Care: Policy Options for Improving Access
    This issue brief from the Center for Adolescent Health & the Law describes the young people who are aging out of foster care, their health status, and the barriers to health care they face when leaving foster care. It explains how health care access can be improved for this population, by first describing how Medicaid and SCHIP currently reach adolescents and young adults, and how these two programs can be used to help former foster youth. The brief emphasizes, in particular, the important opportunity presented by the Medicaid Expansion Option contained in the Foster Care Independence Act of 1999, and summarizes the policy options that can best improve access to health care for former foster youth.  (2006)
  • Transition Planning for Foster Youth
    This study from the Journal for Vocational Special Needs Education evaluated the IEPs/Individualized Transition Plans of 45 students who were in special education and foster care, and compared them to the plans of 45 students who were in special education only. Results indicate that the transition plans of foster youth with disabilities were poor in quality, both in absolute terms and in comparison to youth who are in special education only. The review of transition plans suggests that foster youth may often go through the transition plan process with no parent advocate or educational surrogate, that professionals have limited expectations for foster youth, and that the transition plan document often does not support accountability or serve as a road map for moving into adulthood. The importance of student-directed, meaningful transition planning, services and supports for youth in foster care with disabilities is emphasized. In addition, the need for collaborative efforts between the child welfare system and special education is discussed. (2006)
  • HHS Actions Could Improve Coordination of Services and Monitoring of States' Independent Living Programs
    This GAO report reviews the Chafee Foster Care Independence Program and makes recommendations to the Secretary of HHS to improve the availability of information on the array of federal programs that could be used to assist youth transitioning out of foster care at the state and local levels and to improve existing processes for monitoring states' progress in meeting the needs of current and former foster care youth. [Type the report number, GAO-05-25, in the search box at the top of the page.] (November 2004)

Resources and Publications

  • Telling Your Money What to Do: The Young Adult’s Guide
    This resource from Northeast Massachusetts Community of Practice helps youth assess their spending and provides tips for budgeting, cutting down on spending, and managing money resources. It also provides tools and worksheets for tracking income and expenses. (2013)
  • Youth Transitioning from Foster Care: Background, Federal Programs, and Issues for Congress – CRS Report for Congress
    Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress by Adrienne L. Fernandes, this Congressional Research Service report provides information on the following topics: Who are Older Youth in Foster Care and Youth Aging Out of Care?; Overview of Federal Support for Foster Youth; Federal Foster Care Program; Chafee Foster Care Independence Program; Other Federal Support for Older Current and Former Foster Youth; and, Issues: Foster Care for Youth Ages 18 and Older, Permanency, Housing, Runaway Youth, Use of Chafee Education and Training Vouchers, Medicaid Coverage for Youth Aging Out of Care, The Risk of Becoming Disconnected. (May 2008)
  • Youth Aging Out of Foster Care: Identifying Strategies and Best Practices
    This issue brief from the National Association of Counties outlines the current federal framework addressing youth aging out of foster care, identifies general outcomes for these young people, and highlights model county programs and best practices that are addressing the needs of this population in innovative ways. (2008)
  • Finding Funding: Guide to Federal Funding Sources for Youth Programs
    This catalog and guide provides an overview of federal funds that may support youth programming. In addition, the guide highlights youth initiatives that used creative financing strategies to support their programming and offers tips for accessing funds and implementing financing strategies. (2007)
  • State Policies to Help Youth Transition Out of Foster Care
    This issue brief from the National Governor's Association Center for Best Practices describes ways that states can strengthen policies, improve coordination across agencies and systems, better utilize resources, and meaningfully engage foster youth to improve the outcomes of youth leaving the foster care system and at-risk youth in general. (2007)
  • Transitioning from Foster Care: An Experiential Activity Guidebook
    This guidebook from the University of Southern Maine, Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service, Institute for Public Sector Innovation is designed for programs who primarily work with youth in and transitioning from foster care. Specific transition activities and facilitation techniques are provided as a resource for program development and/or the enhancement of current program orientation and training. (2006)
  • Negotiating the Curves Toward Employment: A Guide about Youth Involved in the Foster Care System
    This guide from the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability builds upon the NCWD/Youth organizing framework, Guideposts for Success, which details what research says all youth, including youth with disabilities, need to successfully transition to adulthood. This publication applies the Guideposts to meeting the needs of youth in foster care with and without disabilities. The Guide also provides facts and statistics about youth involved in the foster care system; gives examples of states and communities that are changing policy and practices; identifies areas requiring further attention by policy makers and providers of services; and identifies resources and tools to assist cross-system collaborative efforts.
  • New Money Resources: How to Budget and Save for the Future
    The YouthSuccessNYC website has a new section on money, which features true stories to inspire teens leaving care, and helpful articles like “How to Create a Budget,” Why Open a Bank Account?,” and “Credit Cards: Buy Now, Pain Later,” as well as information on how to enroll in Youth Financial Empowerment, a free program to help teens start saving.
  • Supporting Foster Youth to Achieve Employment and Economic Self-Sufficiency
    This paper highlights the unique characteristics of the young people who age out of the foster care system each year. The framework for examining this population is being done within the context of Guideposts for Success, developed by the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP). These Guideposts identify a range of opportunities, supports, and services that all foster youth, including those with disabilities, need in order to transition from adolescence to productive adulthood and citizenship.

Webinars, Webcasts, and Videos

  • Extending Foster Care to Age 21: Implications for Providers, Impact on Budgets
    One important provision of the 2008 Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act extended federal support for keeping foster youth in care until age 21. The goal is to improve educational and health-related outcomes. This extension of care has significant implications for service providers as they plan adaptations to their programs for a group of older youth who need services that will help prepare them for independence. It has implications as well for the budgets of state agencies and program providers. This webinar, from Urban Institute and Chapin Hall, offered a discussion on extending foster care to age 21 and its implications for providers and impact on budgets. (May 12, 2011)

Trainings & Curricula

  • The Independent Living Services Continuum: Engaging Youth in Their Transition Process
    This curriculum from the Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program prepares participants to: Understand and implement the Independent Living continuum of services. They will also learn how to engage youth in that continuum; Develop a case plan with youth; Describe the rights of youth in the case planning process; Identify ways to engage youth in the case planning process; and Identify required documentation and its importance to the youth's successful transition.

From the States

  • Arkansas: Finding a Family for a Lifetime/Aging Out of the Foster Care System
    This issue brief from Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families examines the demographics of the children who aged out of the Arkansas child welfare system in 2007, and discusses the services that are available to them before and after age 18.  (2008)
    • Training Resource on Transitional Independent Living Plan
      This brief training resource from the California Social Work Education Center is designed to disseminate vital information about the Transitional Independent Living Plan. Two resources are provided: one for supervisors and managers, the other for child welfare workers. The child welfare worker resource is designed to be conducted by a trainer, or by a supervisor or facilitator. Both are designed to last about one hour, so that they may be provided during a regular meeting, such as a unit meeting
  • Connecticut: Promoting Successful Transitions for Adolescents "Aging Out" of Foster Care.
    This brief explains six broad foundations identified by the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative that youth aging out of foster care need to make a successful transition to adulthood. The foundations include: a permanent family that provides an ensuring source of emotional support; a stable education that includes postsecondary opportunities; opportunities to achieve economic success; a place to live that is safe, stable, and affordable; access to comprehensive, coordinated health and mental health care; and opportunities to be listened to, to be informed, to be respected, and to exert control over one's life. For each foundation, information is provided on current policies and practices in Connecticut and recommendations for reform. (2011)
  • District of Columbia: Aging Out of Foster Care: Important Information for Teens
    Intended for adolescents in foster care in the District of Columbia, this brochure from DC’s Children’s Law Center Teen Task Force explains key steps teens should take to prepare themselves for transitioning to adulthood when they age out of foster care. Actions teens should take each year from age 15 through 20 are listed. Actions include setting goals, getting an identification card, saving money, getting a copy of their credit report, completing or continuing their education plan, developing a housing plan, scheduling and attending all medical appointments, securing important documentation and applying for mental health services. A checklist is provided. (2012)
  • Florida:
    • Frequently Asked Questions For Foster Youth Transitioning to Adulthood
      This publication from Florida's Children First answers the most commonly asked questions asked by teens as they figure out their transition to adulthood (2007)

    • Connected by 25
      Cby25 is a community initiative that engages Florida youth, public/private partners and policy makers to improve outcomes for foster youth through investments in services and programs. Their mission is to ensure that foster care youth are educated, housed, banked, employed and connected to a support system by age 25.

    • Passage from Youth to Adulthood
      A partnership between the Advocacy Center for Persons with Disabilities and Florida’s Children First, Inc., has produced a guide to services and information for Florida youth with disabilities who are transitioning from foster care to independent living. Passage From Youth to Adulthood provides practical information on the legal rights of students with disabilities as they transition to adulthood.

  • Idaho:
    • Standard: Working With Older Youth
      The purpose of these standards from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is to provide direction and guidance to the Children and Family Services (CFS) program to ensure a seamless process of case planning and decision making for older youth that addresses both the youth's permanency needs and independent living skills development in preparation for transition to adulthood. (2013)

    • Youth Exiting Foster Care: Efficacy of Independent Living Services in the State of Idaho
      A six-year, quantitative, longitudinal research study was conducted in the State of Idaho evaluating the efficacy of independent living services delivered to foster youth who exited care at age 18 between 1996 and 2002. Based on research findings, five key independent living program recommendations are outlined to provide policy makers, researchers, program administrators, and intervention workers with important information to facilitate program change, prevention, implementation, and positive independent living outcomes for foster youth.
  • Illinois: Resources to Support Transitioning Needs for Older Youth
    A list of resources from the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS), in English and Spanish, including academic checklists, as well as information about medical assistance, employment, education and training vouchers, goal-setting, transition and independent living programs, and housing assistance.
  • Indiana: Independent Living Transition Planning Toolkit
    This toolkit from the Indiana Department of Child Services contains planning forms for assisting adolescents in foster care transition to independent living. It begins by explaining the goal of the transition planning conference and participants in the conference. A form for identifying a youth's assets is then provided so that the youth and his or her supporting adults can understand the strengths and weaknesses of the youth. A form for transition planning is also presented to assist youth in developing a plan to transition to their own housing when their case is dismissed at age 18 or older. The toolkit closes with a list of prompt questions for the development of the transition plan. (2006)
  • Iowa: Improving Outcomes for Youth in Transition from Foster Care
    This article from The Prevention Report, a publication of the National Resource Center for Family Centered Practice, The University of Iowa School of Social Work, describes current efforts underway in Iowa to improve outcomes for youth through statewide training for child welfare supervisors, caseworkers, and community partners. (2007)
  • Massachusetts: Preparing Our Kids for Education, Work and Life: A Report of the Task Force on Youth Aging Out of DSS Care
    This report from the Task Force on Youth Aging Out of DSS Care, which is co-chaired by Cambridge Family and Children’s Service and The Home for Little Wanderers, advocates a scientific framework based on the “Five Core Resources” for the healthy development of all youth. These Five Core Resources identify the supports and opportunities all young people need in order to develop into healthy, thriving, productive and contributing citizens. This framework was used by the Task Force to identify outcomes and develop strategies to provide the additional attention youth need in order to be prepared for education, work and life. (June 2008)
    • Interdepartmental Task Force on Service to At-Risk Youth Transitioning to Adulthood
      The Michigan legislature mandated the creation of a task force to focus on improving outcomes for youths transitioning from foster care. This mandate gave Michigan the opportunity to create a partnership among state agencies, the non-profit sector, advocacy groups and other community and state based organizations to focus on foster youths that is unique in the nation. This report from the State of Michigan Department of Human Services describes the work of the task force. (2006)
    • Foster Youth in Transition: Michigan Department of Human Services
      This website from the Michigan Department of Human Services provides information on a variety of issues important to current and former foster youth. The site provides links on how to develop supports, find services, get answers to important questions and just keep you posted on what's new. The website will be updated by members of Michigan's Youth Boards from locations across the state.
  • New Mexico: Best Practices - Benchmark Hearings
    Benchmark Hearings are court hearings specifically focused on making sure that a young person has a Transitional Living Plan in place to achieve key outcomes for the youth before his/her discharge from foster care. This bulletin outlines best practices and describes the roles of caseworkers, judges, attorneys, court staff, and CASA volunteers.  The bulletin was jointly published by Advocacy Inc., the Corinne Wolfe Children’s Law Center, New Mexico Children, Youth & Families Department, New Mexico Court Appointed Special Advocates, New Mexico Citizen Review Board, and the New Mexico Court Improvement Project.
  • New York:
    • Preparing Youth for Adulthood
      This New York City Administration for Children's Services (NYC ACS) report focuses on strengthening and expanding supports and services for foster care youth. The initiative shifts the focus from an independent-living to a youth-development framework and establishes six goals for all youth. It requires developing a plan to achieve these goals when the child reaches age 14 and setting and tracking action steps for achieving the goals. (2006)
    • Adolescent Services Resource Network
      Funded by the New York State Office of Children and Families and the New York City Administration for Children's Services, the Adolescent Services Resource Network at the Hunter College School of Social Work is a training, technical assistance, and information resource center dedicated to increasing the knowledge and skills of child welfare staff working with youth 14-21 in foster care.
  • Rhode Island: Building Better Lives for Youth Leaving Foster Care
    This Issue Brief from Rhode Island Kids Count provides facts and statistics about older youth in out-of-home care in Rhode Island, and makes recommendations in the areas of permanency and life-long connections, education, employment and financial security, health, housing and youth involvement. (2006)
  • Texas: PAL-STEP: A Youth Driven Curriculum for Supervisors
    To reinforce the abilities of youth in foster care about to transition to an independent life and enhance their chances of success, the University of Houston collaborated with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (TDFPS) and the University of Texas at Arlington to produce a training curriculum for supervisors in child protective services (CPS) across Texas. This collaborative project, Preparation for Adult Living: Supervisor Training and Empowerment Program (PAL-STEP), focused on providing CPS supervisors with: (1) The skills and knowledge they would need to guide and direct adolescents in foster care; (2) The tools to share that knowledge with other CPS workers by imparting the four core principles of the training: positive youth development, collaboration, cultural competence, and permanent connections. PAL-STEP training included both a 1-hour web-based training and a day of live training led by PAL-STEP staff and former foster youth hired by the TDFPS. Youth trainers presented some of the curriculum content and shared their experiences about life in the foster care system. They recounted some common concerns: aging out of care, loneliness, being gay and lesbian in foster care, and separation from siblings. Subsequent evaluation results showed that the participation of these young people, who also discussed resources and answered questions, was the most highly rated aspect of the training.
    To learn more about PAL-STEP and to access the Supervisor Toolkit, click here.


  • National Foster Care Month
    The Children’s Bureau—together with its information service, Child Welfare Information Gateway, and the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections—has developed the National Foster Care Month website. This website provides a number of tools and informational resource for supporting youth in transition. All the resources highlight a variety of practices and approaches child welfare practitioners can use to support their work with youth, such as: Resources to help create meaningful connections, partner with youth, advance permanency options, and prepare youth for successful transitions to adulthood; Real-life stories of children, youth, and families involved in foster care.
  • Child Welfare Information Gateway: Transition to Adulthood and Independent Living
    Adolescents face a range of developmental issues, and as teens approach adulthood, living independently becomes a significant goal. While youth with intact families may struggle to achieve self-reliance, youth in out-of-home care face formidable obstacles. This webpage by the Child Welfare Information Gateway provides informational resources on helping adolescents transition to adulthood and live independently.
  • National Resource Center for Youth Development
    The National Resource Center for Youth Development (NRCYD) at the University of Oklahoma focuses on increasing the capacity and resources of State, Tribal, and other publicly supported child welfare agencies to effectively meet the needs of youth who will be emancipated from the child welfare system. This will be accomplished by helping adolescents achieve the Adoption and Safe Families Act of 1997 goals of safety, permanency, and well-being through the effective implementation of the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 and other related programs.
  • was created by the Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs (IWGYP), which is composed of representatives from 12 Federal agencies that support programs and services focusing on youth. Through the Youth Topics series, IWGYP provides information, strategies, tools, and resources for youth, families, schools and community organizations related to a variety of cross-cutting topics that affect youth, including Transition Age Youth.
  • Camellia Network: A Support Net(work) for Youth Aging Out of Foster Care
    Camellia Network harnesses the power of new technology to connect youth “aging out” of the foster care system with a community of resources, opportunities, encouragement and support. Youth have profiles on the site, giving them a place to express themselves, share their goals for the future, and articulate what they need to be successful. Individuals and companies from across the country are able to collectively provide the support these young people need by offering up doses of encouragement, career advice, professional connections, and financial support to help them navigate their way into adulthood. This innovative platform is the first of its kind in the child welfare sector.
  • The Forum for Youth Investment
    The Forum is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping communities and the nation make sure all young people are Ready by 21™ — ready for college, work and life. This goal requires that young people have the supports, opportunities and services needed to prosper and contribute where they live, learn, work, play and make a difference. The Forum provides youth and adult leaders with the information, technical assistance, training, network support and partnership opportunities needed to increase the quality and quantity of youth investment and youth involvement.
  • Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative
    The Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative is a national foundation whose mission is to help youth in foster care make successful transitions to adulthood. Formed by two foundations focused on child and youth well-being—The Annie E. Casey Foundation and Casey Family Programs—the Initiative brings together the people and resources needed to help youth make the connections they need to education, employment, health care, housing, and supportive personal and community relationships.
  • Network on Transitions to Adulthood
    The Network on the Transitions to Adulthood, supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, examines the changing nature of early adulthood (ages 18-34), and the policies, programs, and institutions that support young people as they move into adulthood.
  • Solutions Desk: Helping Youth Transition
    This website, which is a service of the Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs., includes the following sections: Collaborative Models Library, Community of Practice, Funding, Transitioning Youth, Resources, and Strategic Plan for Federal Youth Policy.
  • Transition From Foster Care to Adulthood Wiki
    This Wiki has been set up as a space for sharing information about state law and practice regarding foster youths' transition from foster care to adulthood. It allows those with access to information on a specific jurisdiction to make that information easily available to others. This collaborative effort will result in the creation of a convenient, comprehensive, and continually updated resource for finding information on the various legal and practical approaches states have taken regarding the transition from foster care to adulthood.
  • Youth Transitions Funders Group
    The Youth Transition Funders Group was formed in 1995 by advocates from foundations dedicated to improving the lives of our nation's most vulnerable young people. Foundations involved in the YTFG are committed to achieving a common mission - ensuring that this nation's young people are successfully connected by age 25 to institutions and support systems that will enable them to succeed throughout adulthood. The YTFG is focusing explicitly on young people ages 14-24 likely to be disconnected from positive personal, family, community, and/or societal involvement because they dropped out of school; had a baby before age 20 without being married; are deeply involved in the juvenile or adult criminal justice system, and/or dropped out or "aged out" of the foster care system. Visit this website to learn more; check out their collection of papers and reports.


Last updated 9/30/13