Success Beyond 18 Launch
On May 6, 2013, we launched Success Beyond 18, a national campaign to create a better path for young people transitioning from foster care to adulthood. On that day, Delaware Governor and NGA Chairman Jack Markell joined young people and child welfare advocates from across the country to kick off the campaign on Capitol Hill.
Above, Annie E. Casey Foundation president and CEO Patrick McCarthy joins Gary Stangler and Leonard Burton with child welfare advocates and young people currently and formerly in foster care who participated in the launch. This flag, presented to Gary Stangler by the young people, was flown over Capitol Hill in his honor.
View the launch video to hear opening comments by Markell, Stangler, and Jim Casey Initiative Young Fellows.
Successfully implementing foster care beyond 18 requires states to achieve a culture change across the public agencies responsible for meeting the needs of young people as they transition to adulthood. To assist states in this effort, the Jim Casey Initiative and the National Governors Association (NGA) Center for Best Practices held a three-day Policy Summit from December 10-12, 2013 in Santa Fe, NM for states with approved or pending Title IV-E plans to extend foster care. Through a competitive application process, teams were selected from the following states to attend the Policy Summit: Alabama, Hawai'i, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, and Oregon.
In addition to its focus on culture change, the Policy Summit also promoted peer learning exchanges on how to achieve positive outcomes, and featured workshops on topics like permanency, supportive housing, education and workforce, and health and mental health needs. National experts and state participants also led a discussion on trauma-informed services.
The Policy Summit created a timely opportunity for implementers to share best practices, learn about the latest research findings, and receive direct assistance from national issue experts. Over the three-day event, state teams experienced numerous sharing and learning opportunities focused on how to successfully provide older youth in care a strong foundation for success in school and work, and healthy ties to family and community. State teams also developed action plans to address key implementation challenges and promote innovation and best practice in their states.
Materials from the Policy Summit are available on the NGA website including the final agenda and presentations from each of the sessions. The Jim Casey Initiative and NGA will continue working closely with these states in 2014, paving the way for additional successes, and ensuring that foster care extension is done right.
Case Oversight Symposium
In August 2013, the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative held a symposium on case oversight and review in support of creating a better path to success for youth transitioning from foster care to adulthood. The symposium brought together stakeholders from around the country to share best practices and focus on how jurisdictions can establish case oversight and review processes that include youth in developmentally appropriate ways, make room for their voices to be heard, and maximize their opportunities to receive the supports and services they need for a successful transition.
The event facilitated a dialogue among state officials, legal advocates, issue experts and young people and informed the development of a related issue brief, which offers guidelines for jurisdictions seeking to implement quality oversight and review processes for young adults in extended care as envisioned by the Fostering Connections Act. (To read about the key themes from the symposium and learn more about Jim Casey Initiative states' progress on this issue, visit our Campaign Resources page.)