AmeriCorps volunteer helps with Foster Youth IDA

Article

New Morning Youth & Family Services offers a financial literacy program for foster Youth in El Dorado County. This year we added an AmeriCorps position to help support the Foster Youth Launch Program. In the Short time that Shainah Coots has been with our agency she has made an incredible impact on the youth we serve. As a result of her dedicated efforts she was nominated for AmeriCorps member of the month for February 2014.

Member Name:  Shainah Coots
Service Site: New Morning
Nominator:  Heather Grudin
Program: Youth Investment Center

Shainah has been a wonderful addition to our Foster Youth Launch Program. She has worked hard to gain the trust of the youth who participate in our program and as a result she has made an incredible impact on their lives. She has gone above and beyond to help our youth plan, navigate and implement their individualized emancipation plans. Shainah easily relates with our youth. Working with them on both a group and individual basis has strengthened our program and already our youth have seen the positive results in their lives.

One youth in particular that Shainah has worked with is a 17 year female who is close to 18, already graduated high school and was stuck waiting in a transitional situation that was causing a lot of stress and frustration for her. She was presented with an array of different options for her future independent living plan. These options were generated by the adults and authority figures in her life. She was never consulted on what she wanted. She was resistant to move forward with any of the options presented, until Shainah began working with her on a 1:1 basis. She encouraged this youth to identify what is important to her, and then to step back and see how any of the options presented to her might help her move towards her own personal goals.