This preference for kinship care was reinforced with the passage of the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (Fostering Connections Act), which helped to ensure that youth in foster care maintain family ...
Author: Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo
Currently, there are over 400,000 youth living in foster care in the United States, with over 20,000 aging out of the child welfare system each year. Foster youth are more prone to experience short- and long-term adverse developmental outcomes including diminished academic achievement and career opportunities, poor mental and overall health, financial struggles, homelessness, early sexual intercourse, and substance abuse, many of these outcomes are risk factors for involvement in the juvenile justice system. Despite their challenges, foster youth have numerous strengths and positive assets that carry them through their journeys, helping them to overcome obstacles and build resilience. The Handbook of Foster Youth brings together a prominent group of multidisciplinary experts to provide nuanced insights on the complex dynamics of the foster care system, its impact on youth’s lives, and the roles of institutions and policies in the foster system. It discusses current gaps and future directions as well as recommendations to advance the field. This book provides an opportunity to reflect on the many challenges and strengths of foster youth and the child welfare system, and the combined efforts of caregivers, community volunteers, policy makers, and the professionals and researchers who work with them.