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Foster Youth Programs - Essay Example

6 pages
1500 words
Vanderbilt University
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The evolution of children from foster care to adult life has become a significant problem in the current society since a handful of these children succeed in life. Over 20, 000 children ages out of foster care every year with 90 % of them having no idea where they are headed (Shpiegel, & Ocasio, 2015). Without considering the future of these young generations, the government expects them to fetch for themselves what has made most of them end in jails as others become homeless. It is on this basis that the exploitation of alternative strategies besides government support for teaching the group into the societal system is necessary. One of the procedure for promoting such initiative entails formulation of programs that empower the youth intellectually. The ways for creating the new programs can commence with the identification of the concern affecting the entire community, then engage the minorities in suggesting means of addressing the concerns.

Formulation of the educational program is one strategy that can help the aging group once they are out of these homes. Most children in foster care never get an opportunity to get an education. Due to that, most of them end up in dealing drugs after being discharged from the care homes. An educational program that offers an interactive and engaging curriculum will brighten the future of these individuals (Greeson, & Thompson, 2014). The educational program will provide them peace of mind knowing that they have control over their destiny and what to expect. The knowledge gained from the program will enable them to change the outcome of the probable outcome of their life. It will grant them a chance to secure job and sustain themselves and even further their studies hence succeed in life.

Youth civic development programs should be initiated where youths are granted leadership roles in the community as well as the organizations hence enhancing their development (Forenza & Happonen, 2016). In the plans where the teens have power to governance, organizing, activism, and research, they usually get a chance to display and advocate for their needs. For kids out of foster care, they are poor hence have no voice to air their grievances since the dominant groups have a say in all that happens. By initiation of these political development programs, they get a platform to air their views and advocate for their needs.

Creation of more federal program that caters to the children aging out of foster care can remedy the challenges faced by these folks once they are out. Building group homes for those who have come out of the foster care is one program that should be considered. Even after caring for these children for those years, they need a roof over their head as they prepare to face the world on their own. With somewhere to call home and people to interact with as a family, these individuals will have a positive attitude towards life (Greeson, & Thompson, 2014). They will be motivated to work hard for a brighter future unlike releasing them to nowhere. The government should provide funds for the construction of these home. The government should also put in place programs that ensure the aging out group reunites with their families or gets a foster family that can help them during the transition period. At 18 years old, the youths are in a critical condition, and without parental or guardians guidance, most of them ruin their lives due to peer pressure (Shpiegel, & Ocasio, 2015). By giving them someone to guide them, who can be a role model in their lives, most the youths from foster care can succeed in life just like other youths brought up in family set ups.

The community can be involved in the establishment of collective projects that will require the input of both the youths and the elders for its progress. The project should be explicitly meant to support those from foster care to cater for themselves. To achieve these media forums should be used to lobby for such projects. The elderly capable of promoting social work initiative should be encouraged to contribute funds for the initiation of the public projects. The youths selected for the programs have the duty of persuading members of the community to provide suggestions on ways for solving community problems (NASW Press, 2017). Some of the projects that they can venture and yield more profit within a short time include car wash venture, eatery, or a tree nursery. By indulging in such activities, the youths will rarely get free time to engage in criminal activities as they make money that can sustain them. The community can also offer mentoring programs for the children in the fostering care to prepare them for their transition into adulthood. These users are found to be vulnerable hence requires much caution while developing mentorship relationship.

The non-government organization has been in the forefront of helping the needy children for centuries. These structures can contribute to the creation of new programs for the children aging out of foster care. Through formulation of youth groups within the community, the no-profit organization can fund these groups hence supporting the program. The money raised in these youth groups can be used in promoting the education of the aging out the of care population. Since once these children attain 18years, they are expected to find a job and raise money for their post-secondary education, formulation of these groups can help them achieve their dreams. A non-profit organization can contribute to funding youth housing program that caters to the children aging out of the system. Homelessness is a significant challenge to many youths that have no families or any connection (Greeson, & Thompson, 2014). After aging out of care network, they find themselves with nowhere to stay or none to esteem. The shelter is an essential need for these individuals at this stage since it will offer them a stable and safe environment giving a positive attitude towards the future. The organizations can also fund the training projects of social workers on how to assist youths transitioning from foster care. This training intends to improve services provided to the aging out of care youths during their transition period and enables them to participate actively in the empowering strategies (Forenza & Happonen, 2016). They can also offer their support by educating and empowering foster teens to advocate for improved policies, procedures, and services being provided by child welfare agencies.

Private investors can be involved in the generation of the new programs through the creation of social enterprises. The community can present their proposals to the individual investors on ways to counter challenges facing teens from foster care within the community (NASW Press, 2017). The commitment of the youths in implementing the ideas proposed in the youth program will inspire the well-wishers from the corporate sector enjoin in the efforts. Some of the teenagers from foster homes can volunteer services to private entities besides serving their respective communal teams. The efforts, in turn, will grasp the attention of the investors. The youth leader in charge should communicate the agenda of the program through media to reach many investors. The youths stand a chance of getting employment from these investments done within the community.

The significance of these youth programs is to ease the transition from foster care system to the outside world. With the establishment of the above programs as suggested, most aging out youths from foster care will have a means to sustain themselves. They will have an opportunity to further their studies following the formulation of educational programs. For the foster youths that typically engage in drug trafficking and criminal acts to earn a living, they will be able to secure job opportunity in various firms (Shpiegel, & Ocasio, 2015). The programs will also enable the youths emanating from the foster care system to exploit the skills from the public projects to establish their enterprises. The knowledge gained through participation in the activities will transform the attitude of the youths leading to engagement in constructive social undertaking (Shpiegel, 2016). Some will opt to sensitize the rest leaving foster homes and the entire youth population in the community ways of living a modest life. The actions in the long term will result in a societal transformation that benefits New Jersey.



Forenza, B., & Happonen, R. (2016). A Critical Analysis of Foster Youth Advisory Boards in the United States. Child & Youth Care Forum, 45(1), 107-121. doi:10.1007/s10566-015-9321-2

Greeson, J. K., & Thompson, A. E. (2014). Aging Out of Foster Care in Emerging Adulthood. Oxford Handbooks Online. doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199795574.013.18

NASW Press. (2017), Macro Perspectives on Youths Aging Out of Foster Care. NASW Press Retrieved from

Shpiegel, S. (2016). Resilience Among Older Adolescents in Foster Care: the Impact of Risk and Protective Factors. International Journal of Mental Health & Addiction, 14(1), 6-22. doi:10.1007/s11469-015-9573-y

Shpiegel, S., & Ocasio, K. (2015). Functioning patterns among older adolescents in foster care: Results from a cluster analysis. Children & Youth Services Review, 58, 227-235. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2015.09.024


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