Improving the Transition to Adulthood
Young people aging out of foster care endure poor outcomes with high social costs. At age 18, they leave the system without the life experiences and necessary family supports to become successful adults. National data provided by the Annie E. Casey Foundation shows that by their 19th birthdays:
- 1 out of 3 experienced homelessness
- 3 out of 5 have not obtained their high school diploma/GED
- 2 out of 3 are unemployed
Similarly, young people who are impacted by the juvenile justice system or homelessness may face the same challenges. They often have a history of abuse, neglect, or trauma, and have few healthy social connections. Most mainstream initiatives are unable to address the complex barriers and challenges faced by those who have experienced foster care, the juvenile justice system, and/or homelessness. The Brookings Institute estimates Central New Mexico is home to 8,300 young people ages 17 to 24 that are disconnected from their community, school, and work. NMCAN works to address these challenges by improving their transition to adulthood.