For thirty years, Friends of the Children has been empowering youth and families who have been impacted by the foster care system. Our enrollment process focuses on youth who are highest risk of entering, or who are already involved in the foster care system. 30% of youth in our program have experienced out-of-home placement and nearly 30% of caregivers have experienced foster care themselves. Our youth and family-led, trauma informed approach supports the health and well-being of children and families together with these goals in mind:
In partnership with child welfare systems, schools and community-based organizations, Friends of the Children invites children ages 4-6 and pairs them with a salaried, professional mentor (a Friend) who stays with them from kindergarten through graduation – 12+ years, no matter what.
We work with partners to identify families along the child and family well-being continuum to ensure that our model is serving the children and families who need us most:
Ultimately we want all parents to have the supports they need to be the parents they want to be, and for all kids to get to be kids – living safely at home with their families.
Friends of the Children has developed a strong reputation based on the achievement of proven, measurable outcomes for youth facing the greatest challenges. We don’t just achieve strong program outcomes – we celebrate lasting life outcomes for young people. Young adults who experience involvement with the foster care system and who graduate from the program achieve our three long-term outcomes at the same rate as all our program participants – remarkable results considering the national statistics for youth transitioning out of foster care: