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Helping Children Who Age Out of Foster Care

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Rasberry's House of Hope focuses on providing a safe haven for young ladies who have aged out of foster care and women recently released from prison. Unfortunately, they are often one and the same.

Most children who are emancipated from foster care dream of someday going back home to their biological families, only to discover that once they arrive home, things don't always work out, and thus they take to the streets. And on the streets is where they are introduced to drugs, alcohol, violence, abuse, sex trafficking, unwanted pregnancies, homelessness, joblessness, continued mental illness, incarceration, and sometimes death.

Aging out of foster care is not easy as some would think. Every child is not ready to conquer the world all alone just because they turn 18. 

I can't help but think about LaTeisha Flemon who was placed in my foster home when she was about 12 and stayed until she was 18. She had a dedicated CPS caseworker who visited once a month, but she did not get to meet her child advocate or attorney like some of the other children did. She watched other girls who were placed have birthday parties, receive gifts, and have amazing Christmas spreads. And this when I began to take notice. I witnessed the systematic discrimination and disparity of children of color who are disproportionately placed in care. It was always very hurtful and painful to watch, and what was more painful is when I would address why one child was treated better than the other and be ignored. 

And then there is Rachel Amaro who suffered from depression.  She left behind two small children. She took her own life a few years after aging out of foster care. 

And I recall the knocks at the door year after year. Girls would be so happy to age out of foster care, only to return a few days or weeks later, with a trash bag in their hands containing all of their life's belongings. They would ask to return to foster care because they had nowhere else to go. And because they were no longer a ward of the state, CPS would no longer care for them. 

Imagine tossing your own children out at 18, never to return. Surely the system is broken, and it will take years of policy reform to change things. In the meantime, we are here, trying to respond to the needs of young ladies who age out of foster care, rather than having to turn them away. 

No gift that you give is too great or small. Your donation helps to feed, clothe and house young ladies and women who are in need of assistance. Your gift helps us to provide GED, college, vocational and job training, computers and technology, social and cultural activities, substance abuse treatment programs, personal hygiene items, expansion, therapy, counseling, faith-based services, public transportation assistance, performing & visual arts activities, a HBCU tour, and gov­ern­ment IDs - get or replace their birth cer­ti­fic­ate, social secur­ity card, and/​or photo ID.

We believe that no girl, young lady, or woman should be left to figure life out on her own. Besides, every Ruth needs a Naomi.

Girls who age out of foster care are such a forgotten population which is why far too many ends up in prison. And when women reenter society from prison it is not easy for them, thus they end up returning again and again. 

More than 250,000 children are placed into the foster care system in the United States every year and when they age out of foster care they have nowhere to go. 

• More than 23,000 children will age out of the US foster care system every year.

• After reaching the age of 18, 30% of the children who were in foster care will become instantly homeless.

• Only 1 out of every 2 foster kids who age out of the system will have some form of gainful employment by the age of 26.

• There is less than a 3% chance for children who have aged out of foster care to earn a college degree at any point in their life.

• 7 out of 10 girls who age out of the foster care system will become pregnant before the age of 18.

• The percentage of children who age out of the foster care system still suffer from the direct effects of PTSD: 35%.

Thank you in advance for suspending all judgement and for helping girls who are not at a point where they can help themselves. 


Fundraising team (2)

Joie Rasberry
Houston, TX
Novella Washington
Team member

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