Report: Applying Brain Research Can Help Foster Children Succeed
Tuesday, January 9, 2018
LANSING, Mich. – While many discussions of the needs of foster children often focus on the very young, a new report looks at what adolescents in the system need to thrive.
The Road to Adulthood report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation takes a look at ways caregivers and foster-care professionals can improve care for these kids based on their developing brains.
Dr. Jeanette Scheid is a medical consultant with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and she says these young people have had very different life experiences than many of their peers, and many have missed out on some of the things they would have learned in a more traditional family setting.
"Those kinds of average pathways haven't occurred for the kids that we serve, so we really need to be mindful of thinking through all of the different services and supports and to do them more formally," she explains.
The report emphasizes that adolescents need access to opportunities if they are to continue to grow and develop into productive adults.
Alexandra Lohrbach, program associate with the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative at the foundation, says the more caretakers and professionals understand how the adolescent brain works, the better equipped they are to help kids successfully transition out of foster care.
"Things such as getting a job, maintaining meaningful relationships, things even like learning to drive and managing money - skills and experiences that are all necessary to thrive into adulthood," says Lohrbach.
Michigan currently has about 13,000 kids in foster care.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
ALBANY, N.Y. -- Advocates for people with disabilities in New York are pushing for the federal budget resolution to include $400 billion in Medicaid …
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Freshwater mussels are key to keeping the Chesapeake Bay watershed clean, and with more than half of all species now facing …
BUFFALO, Wyo. -- The doors of five historic community halls across Johnson and Sheridan counties were opened this past weekend for 15 people curious …
RALEIGH, N.C. -- Massive wildfires in the Western U.S. and Canada have triggered poor air quality in North Carolina over the past few weeks, and …
OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Farmworkers are in Olympia today, calling for stronger protections from extreme heat. The farmworkers union Familias Unidas por la …
BOISE, Idaho -- Rallies are taking place across the Northwest to support salmon, which face dire conditions in the Columbia River Basin. Saturday…
IXONIA, Wis. -- The public comment period has ended, but opponents of proposed natural gas storage facilities in southeastern Wisconsin still hope to …
HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Pennsylvanians are growing worried about the environmental consequences of natural-gas drilling in the state, according to a new …