Foster Youth to Independence (FYI) is a program under which Tenant Protection Vouchers (TPV's) are offered for youth to prevent homelessness among youth with a current or prior history of child welfare involvement. The Garfield County Housing Authority (GCHA) will accept referrals of youth certified by the public child welfare agency (PCWA) as eligible for assistance. The Tenant Protection Vouchers assist eligible youth for a period of 36 months, subject to availability.
The initiative aims to help communities across the country:
- Address gaps in the availability of FUP for youth across the country.
- Increase housing options for youth with a current or prior history child welfare involvement that are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
- Contribute to federal goal of preventing and ending youth homelessness outlined in Home Together: The Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness.
Eligible youth must meet the following conditions:
- Has attained at least 18 years and not more than 24 years of age;
- Left foster care, or will leave foster care within 90 days, in accordance with a transition plan described in section 475(5)(H) of the Social Security at age 16 or older; and
- Is homeless or is at risk of becoming homeless.
Eligibility is not limited to single persons. For example, pregnant and/or parenting youth are eligible to receive assistance assuming they otherwise meet eligibility requirements.
The Garfield County Housing Authority is not required to maintain full documentation that demonstrates youth's eligiblity. In order to maintain an audit trail, the Garfield County Housing Authority will keep the referral or certification from the PCWA.
The Garfield County Housing Authority will have discretion to decide whether or not to deny admission to an applicant with certain types of criminal history, or terminate assistance if a tenant, household member, or guest engages in certain drug related or other criminal activity on or near the premises. The Garfield County Housing Authority will follow the same regulations as the HCV Program when deciding to deny an application or terminate assistance for FYI applicants and participants.
The Garfield County Department of Human Services, Catholic Charities, Colorado Mountain College, and the Garfield County Human Services Coalition will provide the required supported services.
Hope Bentzler, Intake Caseworker
Garfield County Department of Human Services
195 West 14th Street
Rifle, CO 81650
(970)625-5282 ext. 3018
Report Child Abuse and Neglect: 1-844-CO-4-KIDS
Renae Richardson, Housing Specialist
FYI (Foster Youth to Independence) Initiative
Garfield County Housing Authority
1430 Railroad Ave, Unit F
Rifle, CO 81650
(970) 625-3589 ext. 105