Transition age foster youth are those youth in the foster care system who are approaching the age at which they will age out of foster care. The term also refers to those youth who have recently aged out of the system and are transitioning into adult life.
Over the years, transition age foster youth have not fared well upon aging out of the foster care system. They experience high rates of homelessness, too many do not even complete high school or obtain their G.E.D. Those who do complete high school rarely obtain a college degree. Rates of mental health issues are high among former foster youth. Unemployment numbers are high and when they are employed, they earn far less than their peers.
The Children’s Advocacy Institute has been engaged in advocacy to improve outcomes for transition age foster youth for several years. The laws and policies in this area are improving, but there is still progress that needs to be made. This new video on CAI’s website brings to light the obstacles facing transition age foster youth, it highlights the progress that has been made, and the issues that remain to be addressed. The page also contains a number of resources and reports, including CAI reports, on the issue of transition age foster youth.