Improving Housing Options for Youth Transitioning Out of Foster Care

Client: New York City Office of the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services
Faculty: Ana Oliveira, Dennis Smith
Team: Aya Keefe, Rebecca Kirchheimer, Norma Peña, Jessie Ulsoy, Claire Vancauwemberge, Brandon West
Year: 2011
In New York City approximately 1,200 youth ages 18­21 leave the foster care sys­tem each year. Because young adults tran­sitioning out of foster care are at greater risk of becoming homeless, the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services and the Administration for Children's Services engaged the Capstone team to improve housing outcomes for youth leaving foster care. The Capstone team examined existing support systems through extensive interviews, surveys, and focus groups. In addition, the team examined the policy environment and best practices for programs targeting youth in foster care. The team developed a final report that provides an indepth look at the support systems and housing options available to youth transitioning out of foster care, analyzes strengths and gaps in service, and presents recommendations to improve housing outcomes through changes in process, data collection, communication, and oversight.