Young adults who have transitioned out of foster care and may be living on their own are in need of supports and encouragement. In 2012 the Ministry of Children and Youth Services created the Youth Leaving Care Working Group, with input from the Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth (PACY), and made up of youth with lived experience in care. Its mandate was to act on the first recommendation of the “My REAL Life Book “which was published in 2012 by PACY following a day of advocacy at the Legislation. This recommendation was to complete an action plan for fundamental change for youth in care of the child welfare system. The Working Group issued their final report, “Blueprint for Fundamental Change to Ontario’s Child Welfare System” in 2013.
Many initiatives and policy changes over been forthcoming since that time and the Kawartha-Halliburton Children’s Aid Society has evolved several youth initiatives in support of the intentions to enhance services and opportunities for youth in care and former youth and young adults in care.
If you are a former young adult who was formally in the care of the children’s aid society, please review the following initiatives as you may be eligible for supports and services from the Kawartha-Haliburton Children’s Aid Society. We encourage you to contact us if you would like to discuss these opportunities further.
Renewed Youth Supports
In September, 2011 the Ministry of Children and Youth Services announced a new policy whereby youth who are 16 and 17 years of age and who have left care can return to their children’s aid society to receive supports up to the age of 18 years.
Please read the Ministry’s Question and Answers sheet here
Continued Care and Support for Youth
Youth in care or in receipt of Renewed Youth Supports may be eligible to receive financial and other supports until the age of 21 years through the Continued Care and Support for Youth (CCSY) agreements. The Kawartha-Haliburton Children’s Aid Society welcomes any inquiry from youth formally in the care of the Society and who are between 18 and 21 years. CCSY agreements provide financial and services support and the Kawartha-Haliburton Children’s Aid Society welcomes any inquiry from youth or young adults who may be eligible for these services.
Youth-in-Transition Workers connect youth to services and provide support, advice and life skills training and assist youth to link with local resources within their community. Young people ages 16 to 24 and who formally had contact with the children’s aid society are eligible for these services. The Ministry of Children and Youth Services is currently funding 50 Youth-in-Transition worker positions across the province of Ontario. The Kawartha-Haliburton Children’s Aid Society is working with two such workers in our jurisdiction: one through the YES Shelter in Peterborough and the other through the John Howard Society of Kawartha Lakes and Haliburton.
Former Crown wards between the ages of 21 and 25 years and do not have health and other benefit care coverage, may qualify for aftercare benefits include prescription drug, dental and extended health benefits. If you believe that you may be eligible for these benefits please contact KHCAS for more information.
To learn more about the Aftercare Benefits, click here (link to the OACAS site)
Several post-secondary supports are in place for young adults who were formally in care. These include:
- Youth aged 21 to 25 enrolled in OSAP-eligible post-secondary education and training programs will be provided with $500 per month by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
- Eligibility for the Ontario Access Grant for Crown Wards is extended to include all Crown Wards not only Crown Wards who have had ECM agreements. The grant covers 50 percent of tuition up to $3000.
- All universities about 1/3 of Colleges in Ontario have agreed to participate in the voluntary partnership with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to jointly cover 100 percent of tuition fees (to a max of $6000 per year, up to 4 yrs) for Crown Wards.
We express our appreciation and thanks to Trent University and Fleming College who are both participating in this initiative.