What makes an excellent system of care for transition-age foster youth? Humboldt County believes there are no better experts than the youth themselves.
In 2008, the Humboldt County Transition Age Youth Collaboration (HCTACY) was launched in partnership with the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services, the Y.O.U.T.H. Training Project, California Youth Connection, and Youth In Mind. The goal of this initiative is to build an effective, responsive, and youth-informed system of care for transition-age foster youth.
At 18 foster youth lose many of the services and supports that have kept them fed and sheltered; they are forced to navigate life on their own, with little preparation. Alameda County recognized this as a problem and began to seek solutions to give these new adults a better start.
Hope is alive and well in Tuolumne County. Tucked away on a semi-rural road a few miles outside of downtown Sonora is HOPE House – the “Housing and Opportunities for Emancipated Foster Youth home. This county-owned residence provides emancipated youth with a place to learn about living independently without the worries and struggles of where they will sleep, or where their next meal will come from.
When the Governor used his blue pencil before signing the 2009-10 budget, he drew a line right through the future of foster youth by vetoing $80 million and his proposed 2010-11 budget continues the cut. CSAC is part of a broad coalition – including foster youth, foster parents, providers, labor, social workers, and welfare directors – that is advocating to restore the child welfare services budget.