Facility Opens For "Aged Out" Foster Kids

Published 07/11 2014 08:26AM

Updated 07/11 2014 08:38AM

A new apartment complex especially for young adults who have aged out of the Foster Care system opened its doors Thursday.

This new facility, called The Courtyard is the first facility of its kind in Fort Wayne.

Every year, 500 young adults in the Fort Wayne Foster Care system turn 18 without ever having been adopted. They have nowhere to go, but The Courtyard on Fairfield Avenue changes all that.

Mayor Tom Henry said, "They are vulnerable. They perhaps can get into a homeless situation so we want to make sure there's a level of protection for them as they transition into adulthood and a more independent living environment."

Mayor Henry says this facility is the first of its kind, not just in Fort Wayne but in all of Indiana. He says he wants The Courtyard to inspire other cities to start similar programs.

Kids who age out of the system can stay at The Courtyard from the time they turn 18 until they turn 25. The complex consists of 36 apartments.

Donna Bolinger works for SAFY, which stands for, "Specialized Alternatives for Families and Youth." "This was built specifically and designed intentionally for the needs of this population that is very vulnerable in our country today," says Bolinger. "The fastest growing homeless population in the country is young families."

Twenty-one year old Ruby Parra aged out of the Foster Care system and says she's grateful for The Courtyard, or she wouldn't have anywhere to go. "Younger people they wouldn't have an issue because they'd have their family helping but for people like us, the foster children, the people that have been in the system for years, I think it's extremely difficult."

Thirty-one of the 36 units have been filled so far. If you would like to fill out an application to live there, you can contact SCAN.

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