ODJFS Director Michael Colbert,
The Ohio chapter of Foster Care Alumni of America would like to thank ODJFS for advocating for the $2 million/year designation of TANF funds in HB 153 to support the restoration of the foster care Independent Living Initiative. We offer our thanks on behalf of the Ohio Youth Advisory Board as well.
Please let us know if there is any work that we can do to support your efforts. We are more than willing to advocate for funding.
Ohio foster care youth and alumni were deeply involved in advocating for this allocation in 2009:
- Adrian McLemore reminded the Ohio Senate that we foster care youth look to the government to be our parent.
- Sarah Callihan explained in detail how independent living funds had helped her to successfully transition from foster care to adulthood.
- Lisa Dickson quoted national research indicating that “Every $1 invested in continued foster care supports and services results in a return of $2.40."
- Foster care youth visited 24 legislators offices to remind them of the wisdom of investing in transitional youth who are “Ready to Launch” into adulthood.
Once again, thank you – the words themselves seem insufficient in comparison with our gratitude.
Foster Care Alumni of America Ohio chapter