“A more vulnerable group does not exist than children removed from the custody of their parents and placed in foster care.” – American Medical Association
Seven Facts About Foster Children
1. There are more than 60,000 children in foster care in California, more than 1/5 of all foster children in the United States.
2. 1/4 of California foster children are under the age of 3.
3. The majority spend 2+ years or longer in foster care and experience multiple placements.
4. Temporary placements and loss of relationships directly affect a foster child’s long-term emotional, cognitive and developmental health.
- Zero to Three Policy Center. Restructuring the Federal Child Welfare System: Assuring the Safety, Permanence and Well-Being of Infants and Toddlers in the Child Welfare System. January 2007.
5. In 2012, 23,439 youth “aged out” of foster care with no parents.
- Casey Family Programs, 2012 Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS).
6. Multiple research studies have found that adoption represents a cost savings to taxpayers, with one indicating that each dollar spent on the adoption of a child from U.S. foster care yields three dollars in benefits to society.
Hall, Chapin. Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth, University of Chicago, 2011.
7. Foster children who never find a permanent home face lifelong challenges, and they have overtaken war veterans as the largest population in California’s homeless shelters.
Children’s Advocacy Institute, University of San Diego School of Law. Expanding Transitional Services for Emancipated Foster Youth: An Investment in California’s Future. January 2007.
Find out how Advokids’ services help foster parents, relative caregivers, social workers, CASA volunteers and attorneys better understand and navigate California’s child welfare and juvenile court dependency system.
Learn more about California’s Child Welfare System from the California Child Welfare Indicators Project at The Center For Social Services Research at UC Berkeley.