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Thursday, July 23, 2009

FCAA-Ohio message to OHILA



Ohio is reeling from some very bad news when it comes to state investment in child protection and youth preparation for adulthood. Our best response is a collaborative one. Please be aware of the following Ohio-based collaborative initiatives:

1.) Ohio Reach is a statewide effort to address recruitment and retention of emancipated foster youth in Ohio’s higher education system and establish foster care liaisons at Ohio universities and community colleges: http://ohioreach.wikispaces.com/

2.) OACCA's Independent Living Legislative Committees include subcommittees on higher education, housing, healthcare/Medicaid, mentoring, transportation and the workforce: www.oacca.org/initiatives.html

In light of recent budget cuts, it is all the more important to connect young people who are "aging out" of foster care - in the midst of a recession - with a forever community.

Please make every effort to sign emancipating foster care youth up for membership in Foster Care Alumni of America. This would give them an opportunity to connect with our local chapter. It would also mean that if they choose to move out of state, they could be connected with the FCAA existing network or established chapter there.

Finally, please know that the Ohio chapter is here to support OHILA members and the youth you serve...

As former foster children ourselves, we remember the jolt that took place in our lives when we realized that we had been emancipated, we were terminated, we were a closed case. The transition was over, and we needed to fend for ourselves.

Therefore, the Ohio chapter of FCAA maintained our stance in advocating for the Independent Living Allocation throughout the budget process, and will continue to rally for this cause,


Lisa Dickson
Communications Chair
Foster Care Alumni of America Ohio chapter
www.fcaa-oh.org

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