Advancing Education & Career Dreams
Research suggests that education is the single most critical factor in assisting children and youth in care (formerly called Crown Wards) to lead productive and successful lives. FACS Niagara prioritizes providing encouragement and assistance to our youth to complete their education, and to become successful and productive members of society.
Children in care have typically experienced hardships and challenges that increase barriers to education – from feeling that they could never achieve success in academics, to wondering how they could ever afford tuition and living expenses when taking time away from work to attend classes and study.
After age 18, youth in care “age out” of provincially mandated care. They must find affordable housing, find a job, manage their household needs and expenses and get themselves to work. To a young person, the thought of managing everything on their own without the security of parents and family can be overwhelming.
FACS Niagara’s Education Program
To address challenges that former youth in care face in education, FACS Niagara has created an innovative approach to not only support youth in completing high school, but also offer both financial and human resources to provide them with the tools they need to pursue post secondary education / training and continue to lead successful, independent lives. Many of our youth are the first in their extended family to obtain post-secondary education.
The main components of our education program include:
Education Liaisons – FACS employs retired educators who monitor the progress of youth and help them work through any challenges that they may have with their secondary school education.
Ontario Education Championship Team – Starting as early as grade 8, our Ontario Education Championship Team works alongside youth, helping them to plan for their future education, identifying potential obstacles and arranging tutors.
Niagara Foundation for Family & Children’s Services Education Grants – FACS education grants help with the costs of college, university and job skills training. Education grants assist not only with the financial burden of former youth in care who do not have parents or caregivers to assist in supporting them financially, but as important, provide emotional support and encouragement. Our education grants remove burden and hardship but also sends a strong message of support to youth so that they know someone believes in them and is dedicated to and cheering for their success.