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Young people who “age out” of foster care — or turn too old to receive foster care services — often face the challenges of adulthood without much support.

uddenly, a young person who ages out is confronted with a daunting number of adult decisions to make, from finding safe, affordable housing to setting up utilities to securing health insurance. The fact is, most young adults in America rely on parents to help with some of this support into their late 20s. But as a young person in foster care, it’s quite possible that you aren’t able to rely on that type of parental support. So it becomes critical that you develop a good plan and prepare for adulthood, including accessing as many resources as possbile that can improve your odds for success.

A transition planning tool, such as this FosterClub Transition Toolkit, can help you and the adults supporting you develop a comprehensive transition plan. A recent federal law requires that all states, during the 90 day period before a youth leaves foster care at age 18, 19, 20 or 21, must develop a transition plan for the foster youth. The plan must be individual to the young person and developed with the young person. Among the issues to be addressed are specific options on housing, health insurance, education, local opportunities for mentors, and workforce supports and employment services. The good part about this new law is that the Government states clearly that foster youth must be directly involved in their own transition plan. But 90 days to develop a plan for life?

At FosterClub we believe that, as a young person in care, you owe it to yourself to get the facts and start working on your transition plans as early as you can. The sooner you can start, the more control you’ll have. You’ve dreamed about the day you’ll be on your own. Now with the FosterClub Transition Toolkit you can do something about it. After all, it’s your life. So,get ready — and take charge. This tool is designed for you by the members of FosterClub who have hands-on experience about transitioning.

Be sure to browse through our website, where you’ll find even more information, resources and support from your peers. Continue with us at FosterClub as you make the journey from your youth to adulthood and don’t forget, we welcome your input anytime.

Jun 7, 2010 By Celeste