Over the last few years, Vancouver Foundation has invested significant time, energy, ideas and money in bringing together foster care youth, listening to them, and empowering them to address issues that affect them. We called this work our Fostering Change initiative.
Now that important progress has been made, including meaningful policy changes and improved political engagement, Vancouver Foundation is returning Fostering Change to the community that inspired it.
What we accomplished – together
Over the past five years we made some great steps forward:
- We showed that 92% of people across BC provide their own children with support post-19, and that 76% believe support should be extended for foster care youth
- Our research calculated that costs of up to $268 million per year are associated with the adverse experiences of youth from care, while only $57 million per year is required to improve outcomes
- We attracted over 17,000 petition signatures demonstrating that the public want to see action on this issue by government, business, and the community
- We expanded youth engagement by non-profits, including youth with lived experience as staff and partners in research and project implementation
- We created a “Candidates Pledge” signed by both current and former Ministers for Children and Family Development, 41 MLA’s, and 147 BC Election Candidates, to further improve support
- We distributed $5M in grants to non-profits to create better connections / support for foster care youth
None of these achievements would have been possible without the exceptional leadership of our Youth Advisory Circle - a diverse group of young people between 17-24 years old with lived experience of being in government care and being homeless.
First Call will continue to make a difference on this issue
First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition is a non-partisan coalition of 101 provincial and regional organizations who have united their voices to put children and youth first in BC through public education, community mobilization, and public policy advocacy.
The work of Fostering Change will continue through the youth advisors that lead this work, and the amazing staff of First Call who have the tools, skills, and resources to continue making a difference on these issues.
Youth advisors and First Call will continue the work of Fostering Change from April 1, 2018 onwards.
If you have any questions about the work of Fostering Change, please contact Vancouver Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org