|Silberman School of Social Work faculty, Dr. Gerald P Mallon and Dr. Marina Lalayants, have been awarded a three-year grant from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation to evaluate Foster Youth Initiative for transition age foster youth in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Georgetown. The grant is in partnership with the University of California in Los Angeles and Westat research corporation.
The three key components that the project will be evaluating, as illustrated by the Hilton Foundation program strategy, are:
- increasing transition-age youth self-sufficiency through improved college and career readiness, stronger caregivers and special services for the most vulnerable youth;
- strengthening collaboration and alignment across the systems that influence foster youth outcomes;
- developing and disseminating knowledge for the field.
The Hilton Foundation’s strategy, launched in March 2012, addresses the obstacles foster youth face as they age out of the system by supporting both programs that meet the needs of particularly vulnerable foster youth, and programs that give all foster youth the skills and support they need to succeed. In addition to this programmatic work, the Foundation supports collaboration and coordination across the systems and organizations that influence outcomes for transition-age youth.
Dr. Mallon is a leading expert on the child welfare system and the Executive Director of the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC) Hunter College. Dr. Lalayants has an extensive experience in the field of child welfare, child protection, and at-risk children and youth through research and consulting work.
The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation is funding program evaluation for:
The Children’s Village (CV) has received over three years from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation a grant to support a new program called Foster Parents Partnering with Teens (FPPT). Over the past decade, CV has focused on using residential care as a short-term intervention and family-based care as the preferred option for teens. However, the demand for foster families who are willing to accept teenagers far exceeds the supply. The new FPPT model addresses this need by providing additional support to foster parents who accept teens, including therapeutic support, 24-hour crisis assistance, transportation for teens to attend activities and appointments, incentives for both foster parents and teens, and enrichment activities for teens.
By raising the standard of support, the goal is to keep teens in a stable, loving home where they can learn what it means to be part of a family and build long-term adult connections while avoiding negative outcomes such as incarceration and homelessness. This innovative model will be evaluated by the National Center for Child Welfare Excellence (NCCWE) at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College.