It Matters to Me: Informing Youth Services Delivery



Youth with Government Care Connection The second topic supported respectfully including the voice of government-connected youth in this project. I gathered literature that described the realities of former youth in care (FYIC) and compared their experiences to their non-government-connected peers. Youth with government care experiences had poorer outcomes when they transitioned into adulthood compared to their non-government-cared peers (Healey, 2017). This phenomenon is not only exclusive to BC, but was a common theme experienced by FYIC across Canada and other places in the world (Healey, 2017). This stage in life, also coined as “quarter-life crisis” (Dewar & Goodman, 2014, p. 1), brought a reality of homelessness, poverty, addictions, parenting alone at a young age, dependence on the welfare system, conflict with the law, and health challenges. These realities are true to FYIC throughout the world (Dewar & Goodman, 2014). Evidence of this phenomena can be seen in Ontario (Tweddle, 2005), Europe (Dewar & Goodman, 2014), Australia (Mendes, Saunders, & Baidawi, 2016), and the United States (Hilliard, 2011). Tweddle (2005) shared that poor outcomes were contributed to a lack of family support, limited financial resources, underdeveloped life skills, non-completion of school, and a history of trauma. Due to these outcomes, it was imperative that government-connected youth inform the design of Surrey’s YISH (Hilliard, 2011). The experience of youth transitioning to adulthood, also known as “emerging adulthood” (British Columbia Representative for Children and Youth, 2014, p. 50), has been a milestone often greeted with excitement and optimism, especially if one has a strong support network. A newer trend in Canadian society finds that young adults have become more dependent on their parents and have been staying home until their late 20s (Vancouver Foundation, 2013). Parents have supported their children with food, rent-free living arrangements, transportation, and the

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