Youth in Transition: Ensuring a Future for Teens Leaving Foster Care

Client: Youth Advocacy Center
Faculty: Irwin Nesoff
Team: Gwendy Donaker, Kelly Patton, Monifa Thomas Tillman, Jason Yoon
Year: 2006
Teens aging out of foster care often do not have the skills and support they need to become active, responsible citizens. Youth Advocacy Center has developed a curriculum for social-service agencies that seeks to ensure that every young person leaves foster care prepared to succeed. Its goal is to encourage a policy and service-delivery shift away from a protection- and problems-based focus towards a strength- and assets-based focus that empowers teens to take on responsibilities and plan for their futures. To this end, it seeks partners to replicate its program and allies to support its desired changes in policy and practice. To aid Youth Advocacy Center, the Capstone team interviewed line staff, senior management and leadership at organizations representing foster-care services, after-school programs, community colleges and public education. The team created a comprehensive report of findings and penned an op-ed piece, which highlights the plight of this population and provides recommendations to service providers and policy makers.