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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Edelman, Peter B.; Holzer, Harry J.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    In this paper we will briefly review recent trends in employment outcomes for disadvantaged youth, focusing specifically on those who have become "disconnected" from school and the labor market, and why these trends have occurred. We then review a range of policy prescriptions that might improve those outcomes. These policies include: 1) Efforts to enhance education and employment outcomes, both among in-school youth who are at risk of dropping out and becoming disconnected as well as out-of-school youth who have already done so; 2) Policies to increase earnings and incent more labor force participation among youth, such as expanding the eligibility of childless adults (and especially non-custodial parents) for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC); and 3) Specific policies to reduce barriers to employment faced by ex-offenders and non-custodial parents (NCPs). We also consider policies that target the demand side of the labor market, in efforts to spur the willingness of employers to hire these young people and perhaps to improve the quality of jobs available to them.  (author...

    In this paper we will briefly review recent trends in employment outcomes for disadvantaged youth, focusing specifically on those who have become "disconnected" from school and the labor market, and why these trends have occurred. We then review a range of policy prescriptions that might improve those outcomes. These policies include: 1) Efforts to enhance education and employment outcomes, both among in-school youth who are at risk of dropping out and becoming disconnected as well as out-of-school youth who have already done so; 2) Policies to increase earnings and incent more labor force participation among youth, such as expanding the eligibility of childless adults (and especially non-custodial parents) for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC); and 3) Specific policies to reduce barriers to employment faced by ex-offenders and non-custodial parents (NCPs). We also consider policies that target the demand side of the labor market, in efforts to spur the willingness of employers to hire these young people and perhaps to improve the quality of jobs available to them.  (author abstract)

    Also published as IRP Discussion Paper 1412-13.

  • Individual Author: Dworsky, Amy; Dillman, Keri-Nicole; Dion, Robin M.; Coffee-Borden, Brandon; Rosenau, Miriam
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    Most young people in the United States are experiencing an increasingly prolonged transition to adulthood. It is no longer assumed that they will automatically become self-sufficient adults on their 18th or even 21st birthdays (Arnett 2000; Wight, Xhau, Aratani, Schwarz, and Thampi 2010; Setterstein and Ray 2010). Rather, young people are gradually taking on the roles and responsibilities traditionally associated with adulthood while they acquire the education and work experience needed to become economically independent (Berlin, Furstenberg, and Waters 2010).

    In this document, we summarize what is known about the housing needs and outcomes common to young people who age out of foster care. We explore the current landscape of programs and resources available to assist such young adults with housing. In the first section, we review the literature on the characteristics of the young people, their risk of homelessness, and the barriers they face in securing stable housing, along with relevant federal and, to a lesser extent, state policies. In the second section, we describe...

    Most young people in the United States are experiencing an increasingly prolonged transition to adulthood. It is no longer assumed that they will automatically become self-sufficient adults on their 18th or even 21st birthdays (Arnett 2000; Wight, Xhau, Aratani, Schwarz, and Thampi 2010; Setterstein and Ray 2010). Rather, young people are gradually taking on the roles and responsibilities traditionally associated with adulthood while they acquire the education and work experience needed to become economically independent (Berlin, Furstenberg, and Waters 2010).

    In this document, we summarize what is known about the housing needs and outcomes common to young people who age out of foster care. We explore the current landscape of programs and resources available to assist such young adults with housing. In the first section, we review the literature on the characteristics of the young people, their risk of homelessness, and the barriers they face in securing stable housing, along with relevant federal and, to a lesser extent, state policies. In the second section, we describe a wide range of housing programs for young people aging out of foster care, present a program typology, and conclude with the identification of a small group of innovative housing programs that may warrant closer exploration. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Courtney, Mark E.; Osgood, D. W. ; Foster, Michael
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2010

    D. Wayne Osgood, E. Michael Foster, and Mark E. Courtney examine the transition to adult- hood for youth involved in social service and justice systems during childhood and adolescence. They survey the challenges faced by youth in the mental health system, the foster care system, the juvenile justice system, the criminal justice system, and special education, and by youth with physical disabilities and chronic illness, as well as runaway and homeless youth.

    One problem is that the services these vulnerable populations receive from these systems as children and adolescents often end abruptly as they transition to adulthood, even though the need for them continues. Youth must leave systems tailored for clients their age and, if they are eligible for further services at all, enter adult systems that are not equipped to address their needs. One exception is the special education system, whose services extend into early adult- hood and are designed for individuals’ needs.

    The authors review current public policies directed toward vulnerable youth in transition and find...

    D. Wayne Osgood, E. Michael Foster, and Mark E. Courtney examine the transition to adult- hood for youth involved in social service and justice systems during childhood and adolescence. They survey the challenges faced by youth in the mental health system, the foster care system, the juvenile justice system, the criminal justice system, and special education, and by youth with physical disabilities and chronic illness, as well as runaway and homeless youth.

    One problem is that the services these vulnerable populations receive from these systems as children and adolescents often end abruptly as they transition to adulthood, even though the need for them continues. Youth must leave systems tailored for clients their age and, if they are eligible for further services at all, enter adult systems that are not equipped to address their needs. One exception is the special education system, whose services extend into early adult- hood and are designed for individuals’ needs.

    The authors review current public policies directed toward vulnerable youth in transition and find problems in four areas: eligibility criteria that exclude youth from services that might benefit them, inadequate funding for transition services, a lack of coordination across service systems, and inadequate training about young-adult developmental issues for service professionals.

    The authors then discuss policy options that can help create a developmentally appropriate and socially inclusive system of support for vulnerable youth. Among the options are strengthening all programs for youth in transition, improving the existing systems of care for children and adolescents, addressing the loss of access to services at the age of majority, and coordinating today’s multiple systems into a single coherent system. The authors see heightened governmental interest in better supports for vulnerable young adults, both through expanding the federal role in their lives and through improving coordination of the systems that serve them. The Fostering Connections Act of 2008, for example, extended services to adolescents in foster care from the age of eighteen to the age of twenty-one. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Clymer, Carol; Edwards, Keisha; Ponce, Joseph; Wyckoff, Laura
    Reference Type: Report, Stakeholder Resource
    Year: 2002

    Although public money is available for education, job training and youth programs throughout the nation, many young people in low-income communities do not acquire the skills and credentials necessary to get high-paying jobs. This Guide is a resource for parents, youth workers, educators and young people who want to take action. It details three major public funding sources that can support job-related training for youth: the WIA, TANF and State Education Assistance. The guide also offers information on how to recognize effective programs, activities and supports, highlighting successful youth initiatives. A long list of youth-oriented resources is provided. (author abstract)

    Although public money is available for education, job training and youth programs throughout the nation, many young people in low-income communities do not acquire the skills and credentials necessary to get high-paying jobs. This Guide is a resource for parents, youth workers, educators and young people who want to take action. It details three major public funding sources that can support job-related training for youth: the WIA, TANF and State Education Assistance. The guide also offers information on how to recognize effective programs, activities and supports, highlighting successful youth initiatives. A long list of youth-oriented resources is provided. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Golonka, Susan
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2010

    The number of youth aging out of foster care has increased every year since 2001. This population, although small in number, has a high economic cost to state governments and society as a whole. Yet, because there are relatively few of these young people, states that invest in them can make a large positive impact without incurring great cost. This report highlights effective state strategies and promising approaches aimed at improving outcomes for foster youth in the following five areas:

    • Education - promote educational attainment;
    • Employment - connect youth with employment and career training;
    • Housing - enhance access to safe and affordable housing;
    • Health care - help you gain access to and manage health care; and
    • Relationships - help youth build stable and lifelong relationships.

    (author abstract)

    The number of youth aging out of foster care has increased every year since 2001. This population, although small in number, has a high economic cost to state governments and society as a whole. Yet, because there are relatively few of these young people, states that invest in them can make a large positive impact without incurring great cost. This report highlights effective state strategies and promising approaches aimed at improving outcomes for foster youth in the following five areas:

    • Education - promote educational attainment;
    • Employment - connect youth with employment and career training;
    • Housing - enhance access to safe and affordable housing;
    • Health care - help you gain access to and manage health care; and
    • Relationships - help youth build stable and lifelong relationships.

    (author abstract)

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