This ministry exists to build up foster youth who are often lonely, afraid, and hopeless. There are almost 4,000 children in foster care in San Diego County. These children have been removed from their homes, neighborhoods, and communities. They have lost all that is familiar to them. This leaves them vulnerable and more likely to go down a path that leads to bad choices and self-destructive behavior.
Between the ages of 18- 21, foster youth age out of the system. Then, they try to make it on their own with little or no emotional and financial support. Most foster youth that age out of the system are ill-equipped to deal with the day to day rigors of life. Navigating relationships, making decisions, applying for jobs, applying for college, learning to drive; many of them feel overwhelmed and depressed about the prospects of their future. With minimal life skills and coping mechanisms, foster youth/and former foster youth are most susceptible to homelessness, drug addiction, high school drop out rates, incarceration, high pregnancy rates, and more. In addition, only 1 to 2% of all foster youth graduate from college and 50% of the sex-trafficking victims have been a part of the foster care system. Without the support and guidance of caring adults, the road for these youth is heartbreaking. That is where mentors and advocates come in.
Mentors and advocates play a powerful role in the life of a foster youth. The Mentor is the one person who IS consistent in the life of a foster child. When a child moves to a new foster home, the mentor is there. When they need guidance, the mentor is there. Through the good times and the bad, times, the mentor is there. The Mentor is the person that has the child's best interest in mind and is the person that they can depend on no matter what transition they go through. The mentor is often the difference between that child becoming a negative statistic.
The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deuteronomy 31:8
A Mentor shows these lost young ones what God's staying power looks like!!!
As a member of the DO SOMETHING focused, Rock Church we hope that you have a desire to use the gifts that God has given you to transform these children and allow them to see a positive vision for their future.
Mentoring is a powerful one-on-one relationship in the life of a child. It doesn't take much, just a few hours a month doing what you already love to do. Whether it is hiking, sports, beaches, street fairs, farmers markets, coffee shops, movies ,or a bite to eat, the main thing is that you show up and just keep coming back.
Let's show these young ones what God's staying power looks like!!!!
If you would like information about the Step Up Foster Youth Mentor Ministry or how you can impact a foster youth contact us at [email protected]