Young people who spend the majority of their childhoods in foster care face significant challenges. For many, instability has been the one constant in their young lives, and they often experience homelessness even before they become adults. Foster youth are 44% less likely to complete high school than their age cohorts in general, and less than half of former foster youth are employed within four years of emancipation.
To serve these vulnerable young people before they became homeless – and to end homelessness among young adults – Common Ground introduced the Foyer program, a housing model developed in Great Britain that provides economically disadvantaged youth who do not have family support with affordable housing linked to services that enable a successful transition to adulthood.
Common Ground’s Foyer program, started in 2004 in collaboration with Good Shepherd Services at our Christopher residence, was the first in the City to target young adults without families, a group identified in Mayor Bloomberg’s five-year plan to end homelessness as particularly vulnerable. The success of this pioneering program – and the dearth of housing units available to meet the need by our underserved youth population within the Foyer program – led to the development of our second Foyer site at The Lee on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
To address the unique challenges faced by homeless and at-risk youth, who are typically unattached to education or employment, the Foyer program provides the educational, employment, and mentoring support young adults need to create stable, independent lives, in a residential setting.
Our Foyer/Youth Services Partners: