April 24, 2017
Contact: Indiana Connected by 25

Indiana Connected By 25 applauds Governor’s signing of two foster youth measures

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 24, 2017

Contact: Kate Shepherd, Kate@KateShepherdCommunications.com

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Indiana Connected By 25 praises Governor Eric Holcomb’s signing of two measures that will have dramatic effects on Indiana foster youth.  Senate Enrolled Act 366 (Driver’s Licenses for Foster Youth) and Senate Enrolled Act 497 (Medicaid for Former Foster Youth) were both signed by the Governor late Friday afternoon. 

The first measure allows teenagers in foster care to obtain a driver’s license. Currently, teens in foster care can’t take driver education without court approval and often need the signature of their legal, noncustodial parent to obtain a driver’s license. The bill also waives BMV fees, permits foster youth to take driver education, and allows them to sign for their own auto insurance.  

The second bill signed by the Governor provides Medicaid coverage to age 26 for former foster youth who age out of foster care without permanent families.

“This population of young adults is often overlooked,” said Indiana Connected By 25 CEO Brent Kent.  “I’m incredibly gratified that lawmakers paid attention to this often forgotten group this session.  These measures will help foster youth start adulthood with some of the same advantages that young adults with traditional families experience and help them succeed and reach independence.”

Approximately 500 foster youth age out of the foster care system in Indiana every year without permanent families.  Without health insurance and family support, foster youth often go without medical care and face higher rates of homelessness and unemployment.

About Indiana Connected by 25

Indiana Connected by 25, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides financial, educational and social support to assist foster care youth at a most critical time - when they are about to or have already transitioned out of the foster care system, most often with no family or economic support. Every year in Indiana, about 500 youth age out of the foster care system and into our communities. Statistically they fare dramatically worse than 18-year-olds with parental support. More information about Indiana Connected By 25 can be found at www.fostersuccess.org, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ConnectedBy25 and Twitter @ConnectedBy25.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 4, 2016

Contact: Kate Shepherd, 317-442-1674

 Indiana Connected By 25 Elects Heather Neal and Beth Bray to Board of Directors

INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis-based nonprofit Indiana Connected By 25 is pleased to announce the election of Heather Neal and Beth Bray to the organization’s Board of Directors. Heather Neal is President of the Public Affairs Practice at Limestone Strategies. She has served in leadership positions with five statewide elected officials, including then-Secretary of State Todd Rokita, former Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett, and the last two Governors of Indiana, Mitch Daniels and Mike Pence.

Beth Bray is a Program Officer with the Walton Family Foundation overseeing K-12 investments in four Midwestern states and Indianapolis. In 2016, Beth led the creation of the Building Equity Initiative, a $250 million strategic investment fund established by the Walton Family to help charter schools access affordable facilities. Prior to joining the Foundation, Beth served as the Director of Charter Schools under Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, overseeing the Mayor’s Office’s 24 public charter schools. She began her career in public policy as a researcher and lobbyist for The Children’s Bureau before joining the charter schools team under former Mayor Bart Peterson.

“I am pleased to welcome Beth and Heather as new Board members,” said Indiana Connected By 25 CEO Brent Kent. “Both bring a wealth of expertise in public policy and advocacy on behalf of young people in Indiana. Their experience fighting for improved outcomes for disadvantaged youth in our public schools will be a tremendous asset to Indiana Connected By 25 as we further our mission of helping foster youth successfully transition into adulthood.”

The Indiana Connected By 25 Board of Directors is comprised of leaders from the nonprofit, business, legal and academic communities of Indiana. It is the Board’s responsibility to provide counsel and guidance in the direction and operation of Indiana Connected By 25, while raising awareness of the organization’s work on behalf of foster youth.

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Indiana Connected By 25 is an Indianapolis-based nonprofit focused on ensuring that every foster child in Indiana has the skills needed to succeed by the age of 25. For more information, visit www.fostersuccess.org.

 


 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 19, 2016

 Contact: Kate Shepherd, 317-442-1674

Indiana Connected By 25 hires new leader to spearhead organization serving foster youth

INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis-based nonprofit Indiana Connected By 25 has selected Brent Kent to serve as the organization’s new chief executive officer (CEO). Kent was formerly the state director of StudentsFirst Indiana, where he successfully pushed for stronger charter school accountability and teacher preparation program reforms. 

Outcomes for foster youth are dramatically worse compared to youth with parental support. Only 58 percent will graduate high school. More than one in five will become homeless after age 18, and one in four will be in the criminal justice system within two years of leaving foster care. Indiana Connected By 25 provides programs and advocacy to ensure Indiana foster youth make successful transitions into adulthood.

“Foster children enter the system by no fault of their own, and the odds are stacked against them the rest of their lives,” said Kent. “Every year in Indiana, about 500 young people transition out of the system without permanent families and must make it on their own. We are dedicated to advocating for this invisible population and providing the educational, financial, and social support they need to become thriving, independent adults.

“Research shows that when we help these young adults gain fundamental skills they need to succeed, it saves tax dollars and improves our local economies by millions of dollars each year.”

Kent recently completed a one-year fellowship with 50CAN focused on education policy, advocacy, and nonprofit leadership. He is currently the public policy chair for the United Way of Central Indiana’s Emerging Leaders Steering Committee and a volunteer tutor for Indy School on Wheels. He is a graduate of Wabash College and a student at the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University.

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 Indiana Connected By 25 is an Indianapolis-based nonprofit focused on ensuring that every foster child in Indiana has the skills needed to succeed by the age of 25. For more information, visit www.fostersuccess.org.

 


IndyStar Feature on INCBy25: "From Foster Care to First Time Homeowners"

(July 20, 2016) "Today, the 23-year-old is settling into her own house, purchased with "sweat equity" on her part, as well as help from Habitat for Humanity and Indiana Connected by 25. The latter is a nonprofit that partners with United Way, the Department of Child Services and other organizations to support young adults before and after they age out of foster care (age 20 in Indiana). Among its programs are Opportunity Passport, which offers financial literacy classes, a matching savings plan and micro loans to build credit." Read more


 

YOUTH MICRO-LOAN PROGRAM ESTABLISHED WITH GIFT FROM

NINA MASON PULLIAM CHARITABLE TRUST

JUNE 28, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Brent Kent
Executive Director, Indiana Connected by 25
(765) 430-7553
brent.kent@incby25.org
@ConnectedBy25 

Indianapolis, IN. (June 27, 2016) – Indiana Connected by 25 is pleased to announce it has received $237,000 from the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust to expand financial capabilities of foster youth. This gift will support financial literacy training, 1-to-1 credit coaching, matched-savings accounts, and an innovative micro-loan program to help current and former foster youth build credit and become financially independent adults.

Unlike most young adults who rely on their parents’ established credit and financial advice, many foster teens do not have adults to guide or support them. Youth leaving foster care tend to pay more to secure or maintain assets and are over-reliant on fringe financial services that place them at a higher risk for incurring debt such as check cashers, payday loans, and pawn shops. As a result, basic life activities like purchasing a car, securing a student loan, or banking can lead to poor financial decisions that impede the road to independence.

This gift allows Indiana Connected by 25 to expand its financial literacy and matched-savings program to new Marion County youth. Additionally, the grant establishes a first-of-its-kind micro-lending program that allows youth trained in financial literacy through the Opportunity Passport Program™ to secure lines of credit and establish a strong borrowing history to make larger asset purchases.

Since 2009, Indiana Connected by 25 has provided financial literacy training and matched savings accounts to over 200 foster youth through the Opportunity Passport Program. Program participants receive financial literacy training and a savings account that is matched dollar-for-dollar up to $3,500 toward pre-approved expenses. The program is an initiative of the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, as part of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and receives support from Indiana Department of Child Services and community partners PNC and National Bank of Indianapolis.

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About Indiana Connected by 25

Indiana Connected by 25, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides financial, educational and social support to assist foster care youth at a most critical time - when they are about to or have already transitioned out of the foster care system, most often with no family or economic support. Every year in Indiana, about 500 youth age out of the foster care system and into our communities. Statistically they fare dramatically worse than 18-year-olds with parental support.


 

Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative Moves to the Casey Foundation

Posted July 1, 2015, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

http://www.aecf.org/blog/jim-casey-youth-opportunities-initiative-moves-to-the-casey-foundation/

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 23rd , 2015

The Indianapolis Foundation, A CICF Affiliate, Awards $30,000 to Improve Health Care for Foster Youth
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Connected By 25 to Provide Training and Awareness About the Healthcare Needs of Transitioning Foster Youth

INDIANAPOLIS – March 23rd , 2015... A $30,000 grant to Connected By 25 from The Indianapolis Foundation, A CICF Affiliate, will allow funding for a new Healthy Connections Learning Laboratory to address the poor health outcomes facing older foster youth. The new program will provide healthcare education to transitioning youth, with an emphasis on healthy living and preventative medical care. “We know youth leaving foster care struggle mightily accessing healthcare and insurance systems and often have ongoing physical and mental health challenges. This grant will help bring community partners and foster youth together in fixing that”, said Connected By 25 CEO Sam Criss.

Indiana Connected by 25, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides financial, educational and social support to assist foster care youth at a most critical time - when they are about to or have already transitioned out of the foster care system, most often with no family or economic support. Youth transitioning out of foster care face significant medical and mental health care needs. Unfortunately, these youth rarely receive the services they need because of lack of health insurance and understanding of healthcare systems.

Last year Connected By 25 served 800 youth involved in the foster care system across Indiana. Over the past decade, the number of young people aging out of foster care in the U.S. has continued to grow. Since 1999, more than 250,000 young people have aged out of the foster care system. Nearly 25,000 young people aged out in 2013 alone. Many of these young people leave foster care – typically at the age of 18 – without the support of family networks and without essential skills and relationships we all need to transition to adulthood.

About Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF)

Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF) is a $700 million public foundation transforming the lives of Central Indiana residents in three ways: consulting donors, family foundations and their professional advisors on charitable giving; awarding grants to effective not-for-profit organizations; and providing leadership to address community needs and seize opportunities. CICF was established in 1997 as a partnership between The Indianapolis Foundation, serving Marion County since 1916, and Legacy Fund, serving Hamilton County since 1991.

For more information about CICF, call 317.634.2423 or visit www.cicf.org.

About Indiana Connected By 25
Our mission is to ensure that foster care youth are educated, housed, financially stable, employed and connected to a support system by age 25. Indiana Connected By 25, Inc., a United Way agency, provides technical assistance to build the capacity of funders, state and local policy makers, foster care case managers and independent living specialists, policy and advocacy organizations, and youth-serving providers to effectively support youth transitioning from foster care. Indiana Connected By 25 works to change outcomes which impact youth upon emancipation. For more information, call 855.577.1388 or visit www.fostersuccess.org.


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 13th, 2015
New Board Members Join Indiana Not-for-Profit

Agency Supporting Transitioning Foster Youth Adds New Board Members


INDIANAPOLIS–February 17th, 2015...A local organization, whose mission is to ensure kids in the foster care system have critical support systems as they turn 18,added 3 new board members this quarter.Indiana Connected by 25, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides financial, educational and social support to assist foster care youth at a most critical time-when they are about to or have already transitioned out of the foster care system, most often with no family or economic support.Sam Criss, President/CEO said this “Community volunteers are critical for not-for-profits and add valuable experience, leadership and guidance. We couldn’t do our work and carry out our mission without them”.


Last year Connected By 25 served 800youth involved in the child welfare system across Indiana.Over the past decade, the number of young people agingout of foster carein the U.S.has continued togrow.  Since 1999, more than 250,000 young people have aged out of the foster care system.  Nearly 25,000 youngpeople aged out in 2013alone.Many of these young people leave foster care–typically at the age of 18–without the support of family networks and without essential skills and relationships we all need to transition to adulthood.


Joining the Indiana Connected By 25 board of directors are:

Adam Ternet is currently Business Development Director of Large Group Segment Underwriting with Anthem. He has an undergraduate BS mathematics degree from Purdue University and graduate MBA finance degree from the Kelley School of Business. He is also a volunteer board trustee and executive committee member of another non-profit organization solely dedicated to serving those impacted by ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Nick Stephenson is currently Director of Accounting at Mainstreet Property Group, LLC. Mainstreet develops, finances and jointly operates best-in-class transitional care centers and long-term health care properties. Mainstreet is the nation's largest developer of post-acute health care properties, developing more than $500 million of properties since 2009. Prior to that, he was Audit Senior Associate with KPMG, a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting/Finance from IU’s Kelly School of Business.

David White is a Manger and joined Pile CPAs in 2008.  David works directly with various closely-held businesses and individual clients to provide accounting, assurance, and tax services.  Prior to this, David spent four years working in the banking and manufacturing industries. David graduated from Indiana University in Bloomington with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Finance in 2004. David also earned his Master of Professional Accountancy degree from Indiana University in Indianapolis in 2008.

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Indiana Connected By 25, Inc. www.fostersuccess.org


Indiana Connected By 25 Our mission is to ensure that foster care youth are educated, housed, financially stable, employed and connected to a support system by age 25. Indiana Connected By 25, Inc., a United Way agency, provides technical assistance to build the capacity of funders, state and local policy makers, foster care case managers and independent living specialists, policy and advocacy organizations, and youth-serving providers to effectively support youth transitioning from foster care. Indiana Connected By 25 works to change outcomes which impact youth upon emancipation.
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