Cuyahoga County

Housing

1.) A Place 4 Me
Contact Kate Lodge, (216) 881-6878, klodge@ywcaofcleveland.org

A Place 4 Me is a program available through the YWCA that helps youths from 14 to 26 with issues regarding housing, jobs, and other areas to help create a stable and productive life. You can also reach out to Cuyahoga County Homeless Services.

2.) Bellefaire Homeless and Missing Youth
24/7 Hotline: (216) 570-8010

A resource for homeless, missing, and runaway youth who are in need of crisis intervention, possible respite, and case management.

3.) Fill This House
Contact: (216) 633-2448, laura.geuther@gmail.com

Seeks to improve the living conditions of youth aging out of foster care in Cuyahoga County by supplying household needs for youth transitioning to living on their own.

Support

1.) Aftercare
Jane Edna Hunter Building
3955 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44115

2.) Bridges
Northeast Region, ne.region@cfhcohio.org
(614) 490-4357

Former foster youth who “age out” of the system between 18-21 years old can apply for extended supports. Youth must meet at least one of the following criteria: a.) Enrolled in college or other post-secondary school b.) Participating in a program or activity designed to promote, or remove barriers to, employment c. Employed at least 80 hours a month d.) Incapable of doing any of the above activities due to a physical or mental health condition.

3.) Adoption Network Cleveland
4614 Prospect Avenue, Ste. 550
Cleveland, OH 44103
(216) 325-1000

Exists to connect and empower individuals, organizations, and communities impacted by adoption, kinship, and foster care, and to provide a source of healing for those in need.

4.) Bessie’s Angels
Contact: (216) 854-0246, BessiesChat@gmail.com

Dedicated to nurturing, educating, empowering, and providing low income housing to young women age 18-24 who have aged out of foster care. This program assists with immediate needs, life skills, employment options and emotional support.

5.) Community of Hope
Contact: (216) 924-3852, deniseeaddy@hopeCLE.org

Brings together small groups of 6-8 volunteers who commit to one young person with a foster care history for one year. During weekly meetings they help the young person create, organize and achieve their life goals.

6.) Junior League of Cleveland
Contact: (216) 231-6300

Cooking classes and advocacy on behalf of foster youth.

7.) National Council of Jewish Women, Cleveland Section
Contact: Jeannie Citerman-Kraeger, jeannieck@aol.com

Their Focus on Foster Care initiative advocates on behalf of teens aging out of the foster care system. They provides direct and indirect services for foster youth, including holiday programming for foster youth, and providing duffle bags, toiletries, school supplies, and hand-knitted blankets, teddy bears, scarves and hats.

8.) The Purple Project
Contact: LaTasha Watts, (216) 269-6667

The Purple Project exists to assist foster care youth and young adults who have or will transition (age out) of the foster care system with maintaining stability. They host an annual youth conference in Cleveland, and their Program Director is available for advice, resources and support.

Education

1.) Collegebound program
*Details forthcoming

2.) Education and Training Voucher Program
oh@statevoucher.org
(440) 253-0467

College students with a foster care history can apply for up to $5,000 a year for qualified school related expenses. Funding is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Applicants must complete the online application. You must be a current or former foster student who either:

• was in U.S. foster care on your 18th birthday and aged out at that time
• was in foster care, legal custody or guardianship to a kinship caregiver at or after 16
• was adopted from U.S. foster care at age 16 and older
• will have your foster care case closed between the ages of 18 and 21

3.) FAFSA

Former foster care youth should fill out the FAFSA as an “independent student,” in accordance with the 2007 College Cost Reduction and Access Act. This enables former foster youth to be eligible for financial aid. You must fit into one of the following categories:

• An orphan, in foster care, or a ward of the court at any time when you were 13 years of age or older
• An emancipated minor or in legal guardianship
• Verified as an unaccompanied youth who is homeless or at risk of homelessness and self-supporting


4.) Helen Packer Scholarship Program

Scholarship opportunity to support youth who have experienced foster care to pursue an undergraduate degree. Scholars receive professional guidance, educational support, and peer mentoring.

5.) Ohio Reach

One-time emergency funding payment for former foster youth currently enrolled in a higher ed institution. Requests can assist with housing, school, utilities etc. and can be submitted online at the link above.

6.) Pratt Center: Fostering Success and Leadership
Cleveland State University, Office of Inclusion and Multicultural Engagement
Contact: April Waltonen, (216) 687-9330, a.d.waltonen@csuohio.edu

Current or former foster youth who are admitted and enrolled at Cleveland State University can apply for this program, which includes scholarship, mentoring, peer networking and academic support.

7.) Sullivan-Deckard Scholars Opportunity Program
Contact: Jarrett Pratt, (216) 687-9388, j.g.pratt@csuohio.edu

Current and former foster youth can apply for this Cleveland-based opportunity, which includes scholarship, professional guidance, academic support, and peer mentoring.

8.) Tri-C Reach Scholars Mentoring Program
Contact: Dr. Andrew Cox, (216) 987-0496, Andrew.Cox@tri-c.edu

Current and former foster youth who are admitted and enrolled at Cuyahoga Community College can be paired with a faculty or staff member, to support and encourage the student’s progress towards degree completion.

Employment

1.) Job Corps
(216) 541-2500

Job Corps is a free education and training program that helps young people learn a career, earn a high school diploma or GED, and find and keep a good job. This program provides free housing.

2.) Opportunity Passport
*Details forthcoming

3.) Short Term Certificate Funds
Cuyahoga Community College contact: Dr. Sandra McKnight, (216) 987-4832, sandra.mcknight2@tric-c.edu

Provides up to $2,000 to assist in getting a short-term certificate, in less than one year. This can help you earn money right away. This certificate can be stackable within a degree you might wish to pursue.

Other Needs

1.) AFFIRM.ME
The AFFIRM.ME program is a set of services developed specifically to improve the lives of LGBTQ2S youth in foster care. If you are out of care, you can visit the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland, which is a one-stop hub that provides a welcoming and visible place that brings the LGBTQ2S community together for resources, support, connections, and programming.

2.) Legal Aid Society of Cleveland
1223 W. Sixth St.
Cleveland, OH 44113
(216) 687-1900

Attorneys at Legal Aid including Danielle Gadomski-Littleton can help solve legal programs for youth aging out of foster care such as landlord-tenant issues, restoring credit, and access to benefits.

3.) Medicaid until age 26
Medicaid Hotline: 1-800-324-8680

Youth who “age out” of foster care in Ohio are eligible for Medicaid until their 26th birthdays. Before you age out, your caseworker needs to submit a ODM 01958 form and a Medicaid application. After being initially signed up for Medicaid at age 18, former foster youth must stay in touch with Medicaid, so that they don’t lose services between ages 18-26. If for any reason, you get disconnected, please call the hotline.

4.) Ohio Benefit Bank
This online resource can help apply for food and cash assistance, child care assistance, child support, unemployment and other benefits.

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