I had the pleasure of joining over 100 foster youth from across the Commonwealth at the 13th Annual Department of Children and Families’ Foster Youth Summit. I was joined by Health and Human Services’ Secretary Polanowicz and David Dirks of BNY Mellon, our event sponsors.
The annual youth summit provides DCF with the opportunity to bring young men and women in foster care, ages 16 and older, together for a day of learning and relationship building, providing them with the support and guidance they need as they prepare for their future. The summit offers workshops on financial literacy, higher education, career options, housing, fitness, cyber safety and safe living. However, even more important is what the youth learn from one another – seeing each other’s successes, learning from their peers, and feeling the support of DCF staff, mentors, and leaders like Secretary Polanowicz and David Dirks of BNY Mellon.
The annual event is organized by DCF in collaboration with members of the Department’s Youth Advisory Board. The Advisory Board is comprised of young adults in out-of-home placement who contribute ideas and recommendations to DCF regarding services, policy and best practices.
We are so proud of our youth in foster care and all that they do. This year, we proudly celebrated the academic achievements of 572 DCF foster youth who are part of the Class of 2013. Of the graduates, 491 are completing High School and 81 are receiving a post-secondary degree. For many of these young men and women, the DCF road does not end here. We encourage youth turning 18 to voluntarily sign into care with the Department so that we may continue providing them with assistance and services, but most importantly support and guidance as they enter adulthood. We currently have over 1,700 men and women over the age of 18 receiving services from the Department, and that number continues to grow each year.
Supporting our foster youth is one of our most important jobs here at the Department and we are proud to celebrate and help prepare them as they begin to make their transitions to adulthood.
Acting Commissioner, Department of Children and Families
What You Need to Know about MassOptions! posted on Nov 25
The number of older adults and individuals with disabilities in Massachusetts is rapidly growing. We know that navigating programs and services can sometimes be complicated, and we are committed to facilitating better access for the people we serve. That is why the Baker-Polito Administration along …Continue Reading What You Need to Know about MassOptions!
A picture is worth a thousand words… posted on Nov 24
A picture is worth a thousand words. It also could be worth a new home for a child in need. “There is something about seeing the face of a child awaiting adoption that speaks to the heart,” said Jake Murtaugh with MARE, Inc. “Each picture …Continue Reading A picture is worth a thousand words…
Women Veterans Recognized for Service and Strong Network at Appreciation Event posted on Nov 10
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is proud to honor all of those who have served our country in the armed forces this Veteran’s Day. Massachusetts is also proud to have a strong Women Veteran’s Network that acts as a central resource for women veterans. Established in …Continue Reading Women Veterans Recognized for Service and Strong Network at Appreciation Event