Filed under:


Since the beginning of the pandemic, FosterClub has conducted several polls to monitor how the pandemic is affecting young people in and from foster care.  FosterClub conducted a poll in late March (results here) and an additional poll in early May to gain a better sense of how young people in and from foster care are doing. In this most recent poll, conducted November 24 - December 5, we heard from 474 young people with lived experience in foster care who shared how they are faring during this pandemic.


Like our earlier polls, we asked young people about their needs in light of the pandemic, specifically related to access to stimulus aid, employment, education, unemployment benefits, housing, food security, health and connections. Again, similar to earlier findings, this poll continues to reveal how COVID-19 has caused young people with lived foster care experience to lose employment and housing, to face food insecurity, to struggle to get health care needs met, and become increasingly isolated as many do not have significant relationships they can rely on for financial or emotional support. Not surprisingly, young people between the ages of 18 and 24 who were still in foster care reported having more information, greater access to resources, and better housing stability than those no longer in care. This underscores the growing understanding in the field of child welfare about the critical importance of providing federal and state assistance to young adults during this final developmental period in adolescence, particularly during a crisis like COVID-19.


Approximately 63 percent of the 474 poll respondents had been tested for COVD-19, with 13% reported they had tested positive for COVID-19. Of those who had not tested positive, 32 percent reported being extremely worried they would catch the virus, 49 percent reported being somewhat worried and 19 percent reported not being worried they would catch it. Approximately 57 percent of the respondents reported being extremely worried that someone they care about would catch COVID-19.

Check out the key findings below. 

You can also download the detailed findings here >>>>


Key Findings

  • Housing Stability: Forty-three percent of respondents were forced to move because of COVID-19; 29 percent reported they have found stable housing now and 14 percent have still not found stable housing. Several young people noted that they were able to return to a previous foster home, although they recognized that was a temporary solution. Many young people in this age group indicated that their housing was tied to their schooling, and worried where they will go if school shuts down again. Foster Care stabilizes housing: Approximately 31 percent of those still in foster care were told they can stay in their current placement compared with 3 percent of those no longer in care.

  • COVID-19 Status and Perceived Risks: Approximately 67 percent of the 474 poll respondents had been tested for COVD-19, with 13% reported they had tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Approximately 57 percent of the respondents reported being extremely worried that someone they care about would catch COVID-19.

  • Employment:  Approximately 66 percent reported that they were employed before the virus, compared with 45 percent having employment (full or parttime) now. Only half of those who applied for unemployment received it. 

  • Education: While education and schooling seems to have stabilized since our last poll, young people reported having difficulty focusing, the challenges with virtual learning, and lack of access to computers or reliable WiFi.  Some reported they needed to suspend their education plans in order to make money for necessities.

  • Stimulus Checks: Just over half of the respondents said they received the stimulus check.

  • Food Insecurity: Consistent with our earlier polls, nearly 1 in 5 young people, or 19% of those questioned, reported they have run out of food. 

  • Guidance from Adults: Similar to our other polls, nearly one in 5 youth reported that they are entirely on their own, lacking connections that might help them endure this pandemic.

Download the detailed findings here >>>>

Dec 22, 2020 By APetite1


Siefkessiefkes's picture

Siefkessiefkes said:

When I entered foster care, my family was torn apart. I was separated from my siblings. I moved from placement to placement. Love and friendship were elusive concepts for me. It’s not that I lost friends every time I moved, I simply never made them. I ultimately “aged out” of the system without a family to support me. Young people like me who age out of foster care do not have this luxury. The decisions we face everyday, how we will pay our bills, put food in our mouths and keep a roof over our heads or simply just some helpful advice and someone to be there and say say how good we are doing in life. Everyone thrives on positive motivation and love. Everything I do I do without the guidance or support of a family. I am currently homeless and without a job. The pandemic has made it much harder on me and much more stressful. If I can just get ahead for a sec I think you things could be alright or turn around and I would be seeing the positive things in life. Right now unfortunately I’m depressed and barley motivated to see why it is to even keep going or pushing through al these hardships and times because I’m surviving day to day trying to figure where to stay for the night or how I should get to eat. Lately it seems the people that wanna help are out to steal my belongings I have left or out for there own agenda. I’ve lost allot lately and I can’t afford to loose anymore and belongings or sanity in that case. I really need some advice as to what to do. I know gettting a job would be the first step but not knowing where you’ll be sleeping one night and how I would make it to work I’d rather not get a job and be irresponsible by not being able to make it on time or there that day. I wanna know before starting a job that I will do as i signed up and promised to do. I don’t want to look bad or loose a job, knowing that in the beginning I wasn’t fully prepared because I would get even more depressed and then I’m sure I’d get more deeper into this hole than I am. I just could use some advice or help on what to do next or how to get out of this situation without having to stay at a shelter and someone just telling me things that arnt necessary helpful at moment or could actually help me fast. My phone number is 15307909470