A Decade of Impact on Transition-Age Youth
This year, we celebrate 10 years and 20,000 incredible youth reached through our NextStep Program for Transition-Age Youth. It all started with a vision in 2000 to make a difference in the lives of young people in their final years of foster care. Since that time, we have responded to changing needs such as laws extending foster care to age 21 and through initiatives like our mentoring and pregnant and parenting teen programs. We’ve also focused attention on the most vulnerable teens, including child victims of sex trafficking and those at high risk of dropping out of high school.
We’ve educated thousands of youth across the state through the launch of Know Before You Go — a campaign to help young people make the most out of their last years of foster care support. It expanded into a smart phone application that can help youth find valuable nearby resources from anywhere in L.A. County.
We challenged ourselves to do more for this population last year when we became the lead agency for the L.A. Opportunity Youth Collaborative (OYC). We are leveraging the strengths of 30+ entities and coordinating actions around getting more transition-age foster youth ready for school and gainful employment.
The next three years will be focused on real, tangible differences for more young adults, 14 to 24, through collaboration and innovation. They deserve our very best and we’re ready to build stronger futures for the next 20,000 young people. Stay tuned this year as we announce several new and expanded projects as part of NextStep and OYC.