Creating Lasting Communities for Young Adults Impacted by Foster Care
Media contact: Deonna Kirkpatrick: (216) 432-3342; Deonna.Kirkpatrick@jfs.ohio.gov
Cuyahoga County Continues Funding for Non-Profit Community of Hope
CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH
– Young adults who age out of foster care do not have to go it alone thanks to The Division of Children and Family Services and Community of Hope’s group mentoring program. This week DCFS extended its funding of the program that connects youth who have emancipated from foster care with 5-6 caring adults for at least one year.
Cuyahoga County's investment—first in the Open Table Initiative, and now in Community of Hope's HOPE Program—has enabled 60 youth who have aged out of foster care to be surrounded by teams of mentors since the program launched in 2014. In the last year, Community of Hope recruited 176 new mentors and launched 17 new groups to support and love young adults as they leave foster care and enter adulthood.
“Our continued public-private partnership with Cuyahoga County is a powerful message that we, as a community value every child and believe that no young person needs to enter adulthood on their own,”
said Amber Donovan, Executive Director of Community of Hope. “As we strive to continue to create long-lasting communities for youth, we are seeing the power of relationships to help young people move forward in their lives."
Volunteers have spent a total of 16,868 hours working to support young adults which equates to over $400,000 of community benefit. The new contract for $150,000 will help with the recruitment, training, and management of trauma-informed mentoring groups through the end of 2020.