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As a population, foster youth struggle to succeed in school and the workplace.  It's not because they're doing anything wrong. In fact, 95% want to go to college. But being in foster care is a tough road, no matter how you look at it. So, while they dream of brighter futures, on a national level, 50% of foster youth drop out of high school and most never make it to college.

Pivotal specializes in guiding foster youth towards academic and employment success.    

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Our direct service work with foster youth focuses on education and employment support.



Pivotal's amazing coaches inspire foster youth to be their best selves. They guide youth on the Pivotal Path, a way to discover their individual passions, finding their strengths, and setting success goals for their future. Our coaches are often the first role models foster youth will ever have.  They are highly trained at working around issues of trauma and know absolutely everything there is to know about foster care and the unique set of rights they are entitled to.



Like all youth, foster youth need opportunities to dabble in learning activities outside of school. Foster youth who wish to explore STEM can enroll in our flagship STEM program to learn gaming, coding, and robotics from technology professionals in Silicon Valley. They can also participate in organized youth leadership activities like college campus visits, field trips, and our Youth Advisory Board to build confidence as future leaders. And, getting job-ready is crucial to career success, so our professional development workshops teach foster youth valuable skills they'll use over and over again, like resume writing, interviewing, communicating effectively, and using common business software. 



Pivotal provides foster youth access to resources that non-foster youth typically receive from their families. We provide private tutors to fill in academic gaps. We open doors to jobs and internships in high-profile firms to expand their professional network and expose them to the business world. We provide college scholarships so they can stay on track to graduate. And, when youth need resources beyond the scope of our practice, we refer them to our trusted community partners. 



We are changing the ecosystem to better serve foster youth. 



Our executives work alongside government leaders who recognize the shortfalls of the foster care system and are ready to create change. For years, we’ve been a trusted partner of the Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS). Now, with the Santa Clara Department of Family and Children's Services and the County Office of Education, Pivotal co-chairs an exciting collective impact initiative called the Foster Youth Aligned Action Network.  This effort is designed to bring the entire community together to improve communication and accountability across government agencies. 


Our partnerships with companies in Silicon Valley give foster youth a leg up in career readiness. Pivotal scholars are as capable of success as their peers but lack access to a professional network that gets their foot in the door. Our employment partners are committed to helping foster youth see what it's like to work in real offices with real professionals and real responsibilities. 



We hold a close partnership with the Santa Clara and San Mateo County Offices of Education, Foster Youth Services Coordinating Programs. They facilitate access to foster youth's academic records who need academic intervention and they support our academic coaching program too. In addition, Pivotal partners with local community colleges through their Educational Opportunity Program, Financial Aid and Enrollment Offices to ensure that our foster youth are connected to valuable resources specifically offered at each school. 

SUPPORTING Pivotal's mission is pretty easy.