Foster care recovery awareness starts at the age of understanding and that age varies from person to person. Everyone learns differently. At River Jordan Inc, the number one goal is always prevention. We seek to prepare and equip youth between ages 14 to 18 with community resources, job skills, career and education development skills, personal life skills, financial literacy, relationship building skills, and recovery capital they need before they age out of foster care. In a perfect world, youth will come to us brimming with honesty, openminded and willingness at age 14, hear the message of recovery, retain and carry out all they learned during those four years of preparation, but often this is not the case. River Jordan meets youth where they are at and assists them in building on what they have. The success of this program is measured by how well-equipped the individual is by the time he or she turns age 18.
It is the hope that by age 18, youth haven’t burned bridges and self-sabotaged the relationships they have with caring adults who have been there for them during their foster care experience. (Foster parents, case workers, mentors, friends, relatives, job coaches, peer support, etc.) Studies have shown that foster youth only stand a 40% chance of a successful transition out of foster care if they age out without a caring adult. Approximately 60% of youth that age out of foster care without a caring adult or support within two years will experience, homelessness, drug addiction, suicide, human and sex trafficking, or prison. Most experience a combination of these.
Our community housing program provides its enrollees rent assistance, rent guarantees, security deposits, and guidance to facilitate their success in leasing suitable housing. The housing program encourages independence and develops life skills of its enrollees by having the enrollee and not River Jordan negotiate with the landlord and sign lease agreements. Currently, River Jordan, Inc. serves clients in the Great Lakes Bay Area, which includes Bay, Saginaw, Tuscola, Arenac and Midland counties.
Maintaining eligibility and full participation in our transition and life skills program and continuing to meet all eligibility requirements for our enrollees is mandatory for continued financial assistance from our community housing program.
Our community housing program provides the economic support and guidance to youth to give them the flexibility they need to acquire and maintain safe and affordable housing regardless of their background. For instance, individuals with emotional and mental health issues, physical disabilities and LGBTQ enrollees face unique challenges when it comes to finding suitable roommates. The River Jordan housing model gives youth added flexibility to secure apartments for enrollees regardless of social identifiers or special housing needs by providing financial support and guidance.
No matter how old you are, most everyone who have experienced abuse and neglect never just “get over it” as people who have never been through it might expect them to.
Recovering from foster care and the trauma associated with that experience takes time. For most, it is a lifelong process that requires weekly, sometimes daily recovery maintenance. Our evidence-based peer support program is designed to help individuals address, maintain, live a life of solid recovery. A peer supporter is a person who has knowledge from their own experiences with a condition, or of the circumstances of those they help, or has received training to be empathic and understanding in helping. River Jordan provides wrap-around coaching services for anyone who has experienced foster care. We seek to help and link foster care alumni to resources that will help them overcome PTSD, anxiety, depression and other disorders that hinder them in reaching life goals and prevents them from an improved quality of life.
If you have lived through one or more foster care experiences and would like to speak with one of our peer support specialists, please contact us. We are waiting to hear from you. What we can’t do alone, we can definitely do together.