ServicesIndependent Living Program
Our goals go beyond keeping youth safe while they are in foster care. Through our Independent Living program, we equip young people with the skills to become self-sufficient and lead happy, successful lives.
Independent Living Program for Former Foster Youth
The State of Illinois supports youth in foster care until they are 21 years old. Through Kaleidoscope’s Independent Living program, our staff provides case management and other support services to assist youth ages 19 to 21 to live independently in the community while preparing for their transition to adulthood. The primary goals of this program are to promote well-being, social skills, financial stability, sexual health and self-sufficiency.
Young people who apply for this program are matched with a dedicated Independent Living specialist who guides them through finding an apartment, planning for college and/or employment, setting budgets, saving for their future and maintaining a home. Kaleidoscope staff meet with youth in this program regularly to check-in on their progress and reassess their goals for the future. Together, we support and guide these young people as they define and achieve their own successes.
Kaleidoscope’s Independent Living program provides extra support to young people while we equip them to live on their own, help them accumulate savings and prepare them for the transition to a self-sufficient, happy adulthood.
Watch Sylvester’s story to learn about how Kaleidoscope and our Independent Living Program got him on the right path.
Our Results: Independent Living Program
- In FY16, we started 79 youth on the path to adulthood through our Independent Living program.
- An average of 47 percent of youth served were employed during the year.
- In FY16, 55 percent of youth discharging from the program successfully completed college semesters or vocational certificates during their time in our Independent Living program.
- In FY16, youth saved an average of $3,457.32 while in the program, with a range of $900 to $7,058 saved. Of those discharged, 48 percent had a bank account upon discharge.
- 10 youth were approved to transfer to the Youth in College Program after discharge to continue their educations
How You Can Help our Independent Living Program
Young adults in our Independent Living program are setting up apartments and living on their own for the first time. We accept donations of new or gently used home goods (ex. dishes, cookware, linens, furniture) and professional attire (ex. suits, slacks, dress shirts, blouses.) For more information, contact us. You can also make an online cash donation that will support this and our other programs.