"Independent Living" describes a set of services and supports, not a permanency plan. A decision to provide independent living services to a child does not absolve that state from continuing to make reasonable efforts toward permanence for the child. Enrollment in independent living programs can occur concurrently with continued efforts to locate and achieve placements in adoptive families.
The purposes of the Independent Living program are as follows:
- Identify children who are expected to be in foster care to age 18 and help them make a transition to self-sufficiency
- Help test children receive the education, training and services necessary to obtain employment
- Help them prepare for and enter post-secondary training and education institutions
- Provide personal and emotional support for children aging out of foster care
- Provide a range of services and support for former foster care recipients between ages 18 and 21 to complement their own efforts to achieve self-sufficiency and to assure that the program participants recognize and accept their personal responsibility for preparing for adulthood.
Links and more information: http://www.in.gov/dcs/OlderYouthInitiatives.htm