City of Albuquerque: Social Services and Behavioral Health Services – Filling Gaps of Service for Youth Aging out of the Foster Care and/or Juvenile Justice Systems
The City of Albuquerque has established priorities for funding and they include the following goals:
Goal 1: Human and Family Development: People of all ages have the opportunity to participate in the community and economy and are well sheltered, safe, healthy, and educated.
Goal 2: Public Safety: The public is safe and secure, and shares responsibility for maintaining a safe environment.
The City of Albuquerque is focused on filling service gaps for youth aging out of the foster care system and/or the juvenile justice system, and has established a priority to fund projects that lead to improved outcomes to 1) Increase Behavioral Health Stability, 2) Increase Housing Stability, 3) Increase Public Safety, and 4) Increase Family Resilience. This involves a focus on addressing the Social Determinants of Health to achieve greater well-being and equity for all. Substantial evidence confirms the link between social, economic, and physical conditions and health outcome disparities. Social Determinants of Health include access to healthcare services, availability of services to support housing and behavioral health stability, lifelong education options, public safety, and social services.
Significant service areas to support a successful transition to adulthood include:
- Safe, stable, and affordable housing: Housing stability can function as a platform to promote positive life outcomes while “unstable housing can create a negative feedback loop. Unstable housing can compromise physical and mental health; poor physical and mental health can limit labor market participation, and limited employment can lead to housing instability.”
- Educational attainment: Reduced educational attainment directly impacts a youth’s current and future earning power. Youth in foster care and those involved with the juvenile justice system frequently have complex educational needs are less likely to receive adequate education services than their peers. As a consequence, they are less likely to achieve education milestones, earn diplomas, and experience the health and well-being associated with higher income and stable employment as an adult.
- Employment and career development: In 2016, the employment rate was higher for those with higher levels of educational attainment. Finding and keeping a job is often a challenge for transition-age youth. One study, looking at one point in time, found that by age 24 only half of youth formerly in foster care were employed.
- Financial capability: Financial capability refers to the ability to manage a personal budget and create financial goals. Young people who have experienced foster care and juvenile detention often lack exposure to financial experiences such as banking and budgeting habits and therefore are prone to credit risk and predatory lending. As youth age out of the system, they need financial skills to manage recurring expenses such as rent, food, transportation, and utilities and retain a cushion for unexpected or emergency expenses, along with the spending money to enjoy outings with friends.
- Managing physical and behavioral health: Youth in foster care and young people with foster care experience face higher rates of mental and physical health challenges than their peers who do not experience foster care. Youth in foster care and those who have aged out need access to appropriate and continuous healthcare during their transition to adulthood.
- Establishing permanent relationships with supportive adults: Aging out of foster care can mean that youth lose a place to live, health care coverage, connections to supportive adults, and they may be ill-prepared to support themselves in the adult world. When a youth lacks solid family relationships and caring adults to provide guidance and support, they face hurdles for which they may not be equipped.
This scope of work does not prioritize one particular suite of supportive services and applicants are encouraged to collaborate in order to complement the capabilities across and between organizations. Awards will not necessarily be incumbent on including all of the desired service components, however applicants will be assessed and scored on their ability to respond to how they will link clients to services to address the following considerations and the strength of those responses:
- Filling Service Gaps
- Housing Stability
- Behavioral Health
- Employment and Training
- Supportive Adult Relationships
- Ensuring the Safety of All Youth
Amount: The City of Albuquerque will allocate up to $400,000 for proposed projects aimed at filling in gaps of service for youth who age out of the foster care system and/or the juvenile justice system.
Eligibility: An agency which is a unit of state or local government and/or an agency currently incorporated as a nonprofit corporation, duly registered and in good standing with the State of New Mexico Public Regulation Commission, which has not-for-profit status under 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service Code and which has demonstrated capability in providing the services for which it is applying.
*Note: City of Albuquerque staff will conduct one mandatory pre-proposal conference for entities interested in submitting proposals at 9:00 am on Tuesday, November 13, 2018.
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