Bill to aid Virginia foster youth expected to be included in budget

Richmond Times-Dispatch

Sarah Kleiner

Friday March 11, 2016

 

A budget amendment is expected to be approved today that will provide financial support to young Virginians who leave the foster care system at age 18 without a permanent family.

 

Members of the House and Senate agreed to include $1.9 million in new funding for the Fostering Futures program, an federal initiative that 30 other states and Washington, D.C., have already joined. An additional $2.1 million that the state already spends on foster youth who age out will be diverted into Fostering Futures. If the amendment is approved, Virginia will be eligible for about $4 million in a matching federal grant.

 

Advocates have tried to get the General Assembly to approve the legislation for several years.

 

One of the measure’s patrons, Sen. Barbara A. Favola, D-Arlington, said she was “absolutely thrilled” that conference committee members included it.

 

“This will make such a big difference for our most vulnerable kids,” Favola said.

 

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