Aging Out Institute is well into its second month of membership, so we thought it was high time we provide an update on how things are going:
After a few technological glitches were worked out, our new website seems to be running smoothly! Through the menu on the left and links on the home page itself, visitors are clearly directed to the three primary elements of Aging Out Institute:
Any visitor to the AOI website can access the Aging Out Resources section, which includes our aging out program and research database, our collection of life skill lesson videos, and our compilation of books and movies about aging out of foster care. However, only AOI members can access the membership resources.
Different levels of AOI membership are available. We currently have 223 members, which is a great start!
There are three things that AOI members have access to that general website visitors do not:
AOI Library: This is a collection of downloadable PDF documents, including our AOI award winner write-ups (“strategy papers”) and our higher education reports and supporting templates. We currently have eight documents available for download:
- 2018 Strategy Paper: CitySquare – TRAC Program (Housing Award)
- 2018 Strategy Paper: Foster Forward – Real Connections Program (Relationships Award)
- 2018 Strategy Paper: Roots & Wings (Holistic Services Award)
- 2018 Strategy Paper: Sunrise Children’s Services – VentureON Program (Employment Award)
- 2018 Strategy Paper: University of California, Riverside – Guardian Scholars Program (Relationship Award)
- 2018 Strategy Paper: Virginia Community College System (VCCS) – Great Expectations Program (Education Award)
- 2018 Higher Education Foster Care Program Report
- 2018 Higher Education Foster Youth Program Website Template
Every year, our library will grow as we add more papers and reports.
AOI Webinars: Every other month in 2019, we will host a webinar to enable members to learn more about each of the award winners’ programs. The webinars are set up in a Q/A format. Attendees are asked to read the award winner’s strategy paper ahead of time and come to the webinar ready with questions so we can dig into the nitty gritty details about the program.
AOI Discussions: We have a forum set up in the member section of the website that will enable members to ask questions of one another (ask for advice, tool or funding recommendations, etc.). In addition, every two months, AOI will ask specific questions about what young people need to know and be able to do in order to be successful transitioning into adulthood. The collective answers to these questions will not only help members get ideas to incorporate into their own programs, but they will also be used as a foundation for AOI to build an online life skills program for foster youth.
Aging Out Institute recognizes that part of the difficulty in helping youth age out of foster care are geographical boundaries and a lack of communication between programs. Over time, we hope to build an online community where people from youth programs around the world can come together and share the strategies, tools, funding, etc. that is working so that everyone can continually improve their own programs. We need to learn from each other, abandon what isn’t effective, and implement best practices so that we can ultimately improve the outcomes for these older foster youth. We hope you consider joining AOI so we can build this community and increase the impact that it has in the U.S. and around the world. Thank you!