Monthly Archives: January 2018

Emergency Child Care Bridge Program

Q: I have a parenting foster youth who needs help with child care. I’m hoping to connect her to the new Emergency Child Care Bridge Program for Foster Children. She lives outside of her county of origin/jurisdiction. My question is, which county does she go through to access the Bridge Program, and how do we find out whether that county has opted into the program?

A: To receive assistance from the Emergency Child Care Bridge Program, her county of origin/jurisdiction would have to be participating. This is the county she would access the funding/services through.

According to the recently released County Fiscal Letter 17-18/50, all counties have opted into the program with the exception of the following:

  • ALPINE
  • AMADOR
  • DEL NORTE
  • INYO
  • LASSEN
  • MADERA
  • MARIPOSA
  • MODOC
  • PLUMAS
  • RIVERSIDE
  • SANTA BARBARA
  • SIERRA
  • SISKIYOU
  • SUTTER
  • TUOLUMNE
  • YUBA

In the CFL, if the county has funding allocated to it, it has opted into the program.

Citation: California Department of Social Services County Fiscal Letter 17/18-50 (January 23, 2018)

Tagged , ,

Selecting a Housing Plan on FAFSA

Q: I am completing the FAFSA and on the page where I indicate which schools I want my information sent to, it asks me to indicate if I will be living on-campus, off-campus or with parents. I am currently in foster care and have lived with my aunt since I entered the system, and I plan to continue living with her while I go to community college. Which option do I select?

A: You would select “off-campus.” Students should not select “With Parent” as their housing plan if they plan to live with a foster parent, relative caregiver, or legal guardian. Instead, select “Off-Campus.” This is crucial for getting all the money that is available to you to pay for your living expenses. The option you select has an impact on how much money you receive as the “cost of attendance” is considered more when living off-campus than when living with a parent. For more tips on how to complete the FAFSA, check out the Financial Aid Guide for California Foster Youth.

Tagged , , , , , ,

Youth in guardianship with open dependency case: what happens at 18?

Q: I’m working with a 17-year-old youth who is in a guardianship, but there is still an open dependency case. What happens when she turns 18? Can she opt to move into a placement like a SILP or THP+FC for non-minor dependents? Or must she remain in the home of her guardian?

A: Because there is still an open dependency case, this youth is technically in foster care, meaning when she turns 18 she can access the placement types that other non-minor dependents (NMDs) can access, assuming she meets the eligibility criteria for extended foster care.

For youth in guardianships with open dependency cases, the guardianship terminates by operation of law at age 18. The home of the guardian can still be a foster care placement for the NMD if the guardian is willing and the NMD chooses to remain in the home, however the NMD can also choose to reside in a different placement.

Tagged , , ,

Child care support for parenting foster youth

Q: I am working with a parenting non-minor dependent who works part-time and attends college. A relative was previously providing child care, but has since stopped. The youth has had to miss class and work in order to stay home with her child. I understand that there is a new program that might be able to help her with child care. Would she be eligible for this?

A: Yes, this youth is likely eligible for support through the Emergency Child Care Bridge Program for Foster Children, if her county is participating.

Eligible families are resource families and families that have a child placed with them in an emergency or for a compelling reason; licensed foster family homes or certified family homes; approved homes of relatives or non-relative extended family members; and parents under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, including, but not limited to non-minor dependent parents.

In counties that opt into the Bridge Program, it provides eligible families with a time-limited child care voucher or payment to help pay for child care costs for children birth through age 12, children with exceptional needs, and severely disabled children up to age 21.

The Bridge Program also provides a child care navigator to assist with finding a child care provider, securing a subsidized child care placement if eligible, completing child care program applications, and developing a plan for long-term child care appropriate to the child’s age and needs.

Citation: California Department of Social Services. All County Letter 17-109 (October 27, 2017)

Tagged , ,