What’s next

We are developing several programs in partnership with other community-based organizations that are designed to help foster youth ages 16-24 become self-sufficient, independent adults.

E-Mentoring

Research shows that perhaps the single key factor in ensuring a child’s success is the presence of a caring adult in their lives. For those youth who do not have parents able to guide them, mentors can play a vital role. While there are numerous very successful mentoring programs already available, Foster Care Counts is developing a pilot program that focuses on e-mentoring. Email, texting, social networks, and phone calls provide an opportunity for more adults to serve as mentors to foster youth and for more foster youth to access adults capable of providing advice and guidance. We are developing an e-mentoring program that will include training for e-mentors; offer resources that e-mentors can use with their mentees; and set reasonable, achievable goals for the mentor and mentee.

Independent Living Skills

Foster youth in California are expected to be financially self-sufficient by age 21 – or in some cases even younger. The organizational and life skills they need to remain committed to completing their education, seeking employment, finding an affordable living situation, and paying for food, transportation, and clothes are vast. Foster Care Counts is exploring how Internet-based games can be developed to provide the tools and training that foster youth need to achieve financial independence in a compelling way.