Foster youth can live in a variety of settings during their time in foster care and once they’ve aged out, including a foster home, group home, in kinship care, in reunification, with adoptive families or independently. As a result, they need continuous support in housing, employment, education and career development.

  • The average length of time spent in foster care is 24 months or 2 years.
  • Foster youth ages 16 to 25 are called Transitional Age Youth.
  • Of the 33,000 youth in foster care, 2,500 emancipate or age out every year, putting them at risk.
  • After exiting care, ½ are homeless, 1/3 are unemployed and ¼ are incarcerated.

A Personal Perspective on Living:

Annika’s Story

  • Transitional age youth need time and support to build their futures. At 18, Annika felt traumatized by her past experiences in the foster care system, and realized that attending college would be her way to heal.”I lived in foster homes, group homes, with relatives and was homeless before 18.”

    Read Annika’s story

Learn About Other Key Areas



foster care education fundamentals