About Us


The Fostering Youth Success Alliance is a statewide advocacy group that promotes responsive policies and programs that offer young people with a foster care background every opportunity to set higher expectations and achieve their goals. We are dedicated to data-driven systems reform, raising public awareness, and securing stabilizing supports that empower youth across New York to overcome barriers and excel in life.

Why We Exist

New York State is home to approximately 20,000 young people living in foster care. In 2012, there were about 4,000 youth either in the system or recently exited who were of college age. Youth that age out of the foster care often do so without the basic tools they need in order to transition to adulthood successfully. They are face enormous challenges in...


  • 31% are homeless or couch surf immediately after leaving foster care
  • 25% are homeless four or more times by the age of 26


  • 50% are unemployed at the age of 24
  • The average income of those who aged out of the system between ages 25-28 is just $15,000.


  • 25% experience Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), double the rate for U.S. war veterans
  • 16 times more likely to be diagnosed with a mental illness
  • eight times more likely to take psychotropic medication.
  • teenage girls are twice as likely to become pregnant


  • 50% will not receive a high school or equivalency diploma by the time they age out of foster care
  • just 18-24% will attend a post-secondary institution or vocational training program
  • nationwide, 2-7% will ever receive a two-year or four-year degree

How we work

  1. We identify barriers, funding gaps and challenges based on data, program practice and first-hand accounts from youth in the foster care system
  2. We collaborate with key stakeholders to develop feasible and fiscally responsible solutions
  3. We advocate for innovative and effective legislative, regulatory and budget solutions to improve the child welfare system.


We identify, research, and monitor issues that affect children and youth currently or formerly in foster care across New York State. We mobilize communities and advocate for improved policies, greater resources, and better services.
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