Celebrate National Foster Care Month!
Every May, we honor and recognize National Foster Care Month to raise awareness about students experiencing foster care in your schools, agencies, and communities.
Honoring and recognizing National Foster Care Month is an important part of keeping the education needs of children and youth in foster care in the minds of the public. Browse our Pennsylvania toolkit for ideas on how you can take action in your community.
- Download Our Celebration Flyers
- Request National Foster Care Month Resources
- Use and Share Our Digital Content
- Wear Blue on Friday, May 12, 2023 to Recognize Foster Care Day!
- Get Involved!
- Attend our Online Session on Friday, May 19, 2023
- Statewide Foster Care Resource and Support Map
- Key Facts and Statistics
- Featured Resources
Download Our Celebration Flyers
Download, print, post, and share these PDF flyers in your school, agency, or community program to encourage participation and action for National Foster Care Month.
- Invite educators and colleagues to join in the celebration flyer for colleagues
- Celebrate National Foster Care Month! flyer for children and families
Request National Foster Care Month Resources
A limited number of free resources are available by request, including National Foster Care Month ribbons. Resources will be sent to you at no cost. Please submit your request for resources as soon as possible. Resources are available first come, first served.
Use and Share Our Digital Content
Build a community! Raise awareness and share your celebrations with us!
Please use our hashtags:
Sample Social Post Content
May is National Foster Care Month! Every May we honor & recognize National Foster Care Month for more than 21,000 children and youth in foster care in Pennsylvania. Visit our campaign toolkit to learn more & raise awareness in your community. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Celebrate the resiliency of children and youth in foster care! Learn about how school stability provides Positive Childhood Experiences (PCEs) for students in foster care https://www.childandadolescent.org/positive-childhood-experiences/. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Wear Blue on May 12 for Foster Care Day! Celebrate the resilience of children & youth in foster care. Snap a photo, tag us on _, or on Twitter or LinkedIn @Center_Schools. Email photos to email@example.com. #WearBlueForFosterCare #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Every school entity has a foster care point of contact to assist students in foster care. Find the nearest to you https://directory.center-school.org/fostercare. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
School stability and positive school experiences promote resilience for students in foster care. Learn about ensuring school stability and share our flyer. http://bit.ly/406a1y3 #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Students in foster care are at risk of facing school disruptions due to mobility of foster care placements. Learn about providing school stability to students in foster care at https://www.pafostercare.org/. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Education and child welfare systems must pay attention to the mental health needs of the more than 391,000 U.S. children and youth in foster care. Find resources to support youth mental health at www.childwelfare.gov/fostercaremonth/resources/youthhealth/. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Up to 80 percent of children in foster care have significant mental health challenges. Learn more about this year’s National Foster Care Month theme, “Strengthening Minds. Uplifting Families,” at https://www.childwelfare.gov/fostercaremonth/. #FosterCareMonth #FosterCareMonthPA
Download the images below to use in your posts and emails. To download, please click on the thumbnail and right-click “save image as” to save the image to your device.
- 1200×675 px images work well on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
- 1080×1080 px images work well on Instagram.
Wear Blue on Friday, May 12, 2023 to Recognize Foster Care Day!
Wear blue and gather your colleagues, students, friends, and family for a photo on Friday, May, 12! Please post to your professional and personal social accounts. Email us your photos at firstname.lastname@example.org or tag us on Twitter and LinkedIn @Center_Schools.
Sample email content to share about Wear Blue Day within your agency
Subject: Wear Blue for Our Foster Care Day! #WearBlueForFosterCare
Honoring and recognizing National Foster Care Month is an important part of keeping the needs of children and youth in foster care in the minds of the public. On Friday, May 12, turn your school or agency blue to recognize our Foster Care Day for #WearBlueForFosterCare!
Gather colleagues, students, friends, and family to take photos, selfies, and videos.
Next, share them on social media or email them to us at email@example.com.Tag us on Twitter and LinkedIn @Center_Schools.
Honor and recognize National Foster Care Month by getting involved! Here are a few ideas for taking action.
- Organize a supply drive within your school community or agency to collect comfort items, essentials, and school supplies for a child’s first night in care. Coordinate your donations with your local Education Liaison.
- Be intentional about checking in with students experiencing foster care this May. Ensure they are on track and have resources to finish the current school year strong, have a contact and emergency contact for support during summer break, and will be ready to begin school on time next fall.
- Organize or participate in a Foster Walk with the Foster Care Alumni of America.
- Show support by wearing blue on Friday, May 12 for Foster Care Day during #WearBlueForFosterCare. Post to social media to keep the needs of children experiencing foster care in the minds of the public. Tag us on Twitter or LinkedIn @Center_Schools and email your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. Post: “I’m wearing blue to honor and recognize the needs of children and youth experiencing foster care. #FosterCare Month #FosterCareMonthPA #WearBlueForFosterCare.”
- Sponsor a child’s birthday while they are in foster care. Foster Love helps these children feel seen and loved on their birthday. Visit Foster Love for more information.
Attend our Online Session on Friday, May 19, 2023
Exiting Foster Care: A Successful Transition to Adulthood
Friday, May 19, 2023, 10AM–11AM ET | Virtual
Over 30 percent of Pennsylvania’s foster care population are transition age youth (ages 14-21). The transition to adulthood for youth experiencing foster care is a pivotal time that can greatly impact their trajectory in school and life. Young people in foster care uniquely face many obstacles to a successful transition to adulthood, including the effects of trauma and the availability of services and supports. This session will highlight strategies for how educators, child welfare professionals, and community stakeholders can make a critical difference in the lives and futures of transition aged youth in and leaving foster care by understanding the challenges they face, the services and resources available to them, and strategies to effectively engage young people. Participants will learn about important resources and programs in PA that can support young people in and leaving foster care, as well as tips you can use in your daily work. Act 48 and NASW credits available for participants.
Presenter: Jennifer Pokempner, Policy Director, Youth Law Center
Statewide Foster Care Resource and Support Map
Many community based organizations across Pennsylvania provide resources and support to children and youth experiencing foster care. View our new resource map to see and learn more about available resources and supports in your area.
Help us grow our map! Do you know of an organization providing resources and support not listed? Please submit the name of the organization to us to create a network of resources for children and youth experiencing foster care.
Key Facts and Statistics
Nationally, over 391,000 children and youth are in foster care. More than 21,000 children and youth experienced foster care in Pennsylvania in 2021.
While foster care is meant to be temporary, the average length of time a child spends in foster care in Pennsylvania is 22 months.
The case plan goal for 70 percent of children in foster care in Pennsylvania is to reunify with parents or primary caregivers.
Pennsylvania is a county-administered, state supervised child welfare system. The Office of Children, Youth, and Families at the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services supervises the 67 independently operated county child welfare agencies.
All school entities, or local education agencies (LEAs), are required to have a school point of contact to assist students in foster care in Pennsylvania.
Federal education and child welfare laws support school protections for students in foster care. These laws provide school stability, including transportation and immediate enrollment to school, through ongoing collaborative efforts among education and child welfare partners.
While a combination of federal and state laws provide school stability, national studies still reveal that approximately 31 percent of children in foster care change schools when first entering care.
In Pennsylvania, the graduation rate for students experiencing foster care is 53 percent, compared to 87 percent of all students in school.
Eighteen percent of Pennsylvania high school students in foster care scored proficient on reading-language arts assessments compared to 48 percent of all students in school.
Nationally, some studies indicate that only 2 percent of foster care alumni attain a bachelor’s degree, compared to 23 percent of all adults.
Pennsylvania’s Fostering Independence Tuition Waiver Program (FosterEd) provides a higher education tuition and fee waiver for eligible youth who are or were in foster care. The program offers greater access to education and helps to reduce or eliminate debt upon graduation.
Pennsylvania’s Act 1 of 2022 – Assisting Students Experiencing Education Instability defines critical means of assistance for students in foster care who experience one or more changes in school entity enrollment during a school year.
Foster Care Transition Toolkit
Helping Youth Transition to Adulthood: Guidance for Foster Parents
How the Child Welfare System Works
National Foster Care Month Website
Providing School Stability in Pennsylvania Flyer
Quick Guide for Schools: Meeting the Needs of Students in Foster Care