Children's Network of South Florida, LLC

Independent Living

Independent Living Services

Independent Living (IL) Services is provided to youth under supervision beginning at age 13 and continues through age 23.  Youths, ages 13-17, in licensed care are assigned a Primary Case Manager who assures integration of all services provided to the youth, and an IL Case Manager who coordinates delivery of individualized life skills services based on the child’s strengths and areas of needs.

Young adults formerly in foster care are assigned an IL Case Manager who provides support in accessing community resources, completing Extended Foster Care, Post Secondary Educational Support and Services and Aftercare applications, navigating the educational system, exploring scholarships and grants, and amongst other traditional case management responsibilities, facilitates training on a variety of topics to expound upon developmental and skill building information and activities previously delivered while in foster care.

Independent Living Services (ages 13 to 15)

The youth and the Case Manager work together to identify the youth’s areas of strength and those that require strengthening. An individualized plan is established that specifies goals and objectives to achieve educational and developmental tasks.

Youths are encouraged to participate in field trips that are geared towards social development and life skills workshops on financial literacy, time management, interpersonal relationships, stress management, sex awareness, parenting skills, health and hygiene, etc.  Experts from within the topic being discussed serve as co-presenters; this may include young adults formerly in foster care.

Independent Living Services (ages 16 to 17)

For youth in licensed care, at age 16 an Intensive Services Plan is developed to ensure critical core tasks are accomplished prior to the youth’s 18th birthday. These include:

  1. Participation in a DATE  course (Drug and Alcohol) specifically allocated for foster teens who are interested in obtaining a driver’s licensing
  2. Establishing a bank account
  3. Complete an initial budget and reviewed it at least once within a six month period
  4. Compose a grocery list, purchased the items, prepared a meal and cleaned up
  5. Attend a resume writing class and composed a resume
  6. Engage in an interviewing skills class and participated in a mock interview
  7. Develop a My Pathway to Success Plan that outlines the intended living arrangement upon reaching age 18, along with supports and available services.

Helpful Resources:

Frequently Asked Questions for Youth Aging Out of Foster Care

Florida Youth Shine Information

Health and Well Being Resource

Information on Extended Foster Care

Helpful Websites:

www.tinyurl.com/ofetoolkit  Operation Full Employment Tool Kit (electronic flip book)

http://centerforchildwelfare.fmhi.usf.edu/kb/indliv/FOFEResourceTKIndex.pdf Center for Child Welfare-Independant Living  (PDF version for printing and viewing)

http://centerforchildwelfare.fmhi.usf.edu/il/default.aspx Independent Living Resource Page (school, housing, employment resources for youth, professionals, and caregivers): 

http://www.myfloridayouth.com/index.html  Strengthening Youth Partnerships (SYP) Website

http://www.floridajobs.org/onestop/onestopdir/onestopdirlist.asp  Workforce Innovation One-Stop Center Directory

http://centerforchildwelfare.fmhi.usf.edu/kb/resource/YouthSpace.aspxYouth Space: A Place for You

Keys to Independence Drivers's License Project

www.flhsmv.gov/teens