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Looking to learn more about the foster care system and the challenges faced by young people in foster care? Every foster child’s journey is different but there are also a lot of misconceptions about what it means to be in foster care so we compiled some great resources you can use to learn a little more. If you have just a few minutes, half an hour or you want a deeper look, we have options for you below!

if you have 5 minutes

Learn some of the facts about foster care, the barriers foster youth face and some common misconceptions. Learn what the foster care experience can be like, and hear from some of our Pivotal scholars about their experiences. 
Taken into Foster Care, Through the Eyes of a Child

Michelle Voorhees, a former foster child, paints a vivid picture of the experience a child goes through when going into foster care. 



The Barriers Foster Youth Face & The Pivotal Impact

Look at some of the barriers faced by foster youth and the impact Pivotal made in the last year to help these resilient scholars. 


Courageous Conversations

What advice would you give your younger self? Our Pivotal scholars look back on their experiences and share their answers.


What are the Misconceptions of Foster Care?

A look at the misconceptions that many people have about foster youth.


if you have half an hour

In these powerful TED talks, former foster youth and foster parents discuss their experiences and some of the issues they face during and after foster care.
The Silent Majority - A Deeper Look into Foster Care
"It's amazing to see what kind of an impact it has when you know somebody cares about you and is dedicated to your success."

Angel Trejo discusses his experience of how foster youth in America often fall through the cracks and left out of traditional efforts to improve conditions for minorities.


Innovating the American Foster Care System
"I thought that the storm was over but it was just the beginning of the next storm."

Sixto Cancel talks about his lived experienced in foster care which fuels his passion for shifting system policy and practice through technology and data.


A Child of the State
"I...became aware that I knew nobody that new me for longer than a year."

Lemn Sissay tells his moving story about a childhood filled with uncertainty and confusion as he moved from home to home through the foster care system, not knowing security, stability or comfort.


Social Capital: What Foster Children Really Need
"When a child ages out of care, they have no social or family support. And they are expected to make it."

Victor Sims discusses the challenges that foster youth face when they "age out" of the system and talks about what can be done to help.


Foster Care to College: A Crisis WE Can Solve
"When a child has been detained from their home that means we as a society have said that is an unsafe place to be and that means all of us in society now need to take the responsibility of helping that child" 

Dr. Robert Duke, who has been a foster parent since 2011, talks about the societal obligation we all share to work to better the lives of foster youth.


if you want to dig deeper

Check out these amazing books about growing up in the foster care system, as well as some fictional accounts that discuss the challenges and history of foster care.

foster care in pop culture

Movies and books often show us a picture of the foster care experience and while these representations aren't always true to life, they often provide a starting point to spur conversations and provoke discussion about this very complex issue. 

Do you have additional resources or suggestions to add to this page? Let us know!