On any given day, there are approximately 400,000 children in out-of-home care in the United States. Last year, 11 percent of the children (over 26,000) exited foster care "aging out"of the system. Research has shown that teens aging out of the system are highly likely as adults to experience homelessness, poor health, unemployment, incarceration, and other difficult futures.What does it mean to “age out?” At the age of 18, foster kids are removed from the system and sent out into the “real world.” After being expelled from the system that served as their surrogate family, the new adults are suddenly faced with an uncertain future. Loneliness and despair often ensue due to their not being prepared to make it on their own. This is in stark contrast to students that grow up in traditional families. They enjoy the support of their family as they transition into being on their own during the college years. Not so for “aged-out” foster care students.
Orphan Outreach and International Student Foundation (ISF) are working together to transform the lives of students who have aged out of foster care and orphanage systems in the U.S. and around the world. The mission of International Student Foundation is to provide scholarships, mentoring and leadership training to these students. Together Orphan Outreach and ISF have the common goal of transforming these students, in the U.S. and internationally, into successful leaders of influence who thrive professionally and impact their communities. Find out more about being a mentor to a foster child.