Early Outcomes for Young Adults Transitioning from Out-of-Home Care in the U.S.
The following abstract is taken from Child and Family Social Work.
This paper describes the well-being of participants in the Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth (n = 603), a study of youth leaving out-of-home care in the USA, at the point where they have been 'young adults' for about 1 year. Although some of these young adults are in stable situations and either moving forward with their education or employed in promising jobs, more of them are having significant difficulties during the early stages of the transition to adulthood. Too many are neither employed nor in school, have children that they are not able to parent, suffer from persistent mental illness or substance use disorders, find themselves without basic necessities, become homeless, or end up involved with the criminal justice system. They are doing worse than other young adults across a number of important dimensions. Most of these young adults continue to maintain relations with members of their family of origin, with many finding themselves living with family at age 19. Importantly, those young people who chose to remain under the care and supervision of the child welfare system experienced better outcomes than those who either chose to or were forced to leave care.