Involving Foster Care Youth in Planning for their Transition: Does it make a difference?
Youth Policy Institute of Iowa.
Published: July 2014
Youth Policy Institute of Iowa (YPII)
6200 Aurora Avenue, Suite 206E
Des Moines, IA 50322
Tel: (515) 727-4220
Fax: (515) 727-4223
This issue brief presents the findings of a survey of 362 youth (ages 18-21) voluntarily participating in Iowa’s Aftercare Services in October 2013. Of the 362 youth completing the survey, 348 responded to questions related to their involvement in transition planning and self-concept. Approximately 51% of youth responded that they had been involved in the development of their transition plan while in foster care (N=178); the other half either didn’t recall having a plan (25%); weren’t involved in developing their plan (9%); or had some say but didn’t think the plan was a good one (14.5%). The level of involvement in transition planning reported by the youth did not vary much by age or gender; although 20 year olds were somewhat more likely to report not having had a plan (30%) than the 18 and 19 year olds (23%). Youth who were involved in developing their transition plan were more likely to respond they felt supported, hopeful, respected, confident, and ready, than those who did not participate. Policy implications are discussed.
foster adolescents; independent living; youth engagement; decision making; independent living skills; well being