YWCA Greater Cleveland

Supportive Services

Support NIA

As shown in study after study, young adults transitioning out of foster care face bleak prospects. Studies have shown that:

  • 40% of homeless young adults (ages 18-20) report having been in foster care at some point during childhood
  • within four years of emancipation from foster care, 24 percent of young adults have been homeless
  • nearly half of young women have been pregnant by the age of 19

YWCA Greater Cleveland provides several programs to serve the needs of girls and youth at risk.

The Nurturing Independence and Aspiration (NIA) program is a Trauma-Informed System of Care model focused on permanence, education, employment, housing, physical and mental health, and personal and community engagement for youth 14 to 24 years of age transitioning from failing systems – including foster care. This program provides services, support and inspiration to girls and transition-age youth.

Building on the success of our NIA program, YWCA Greater Cleveland created Independence Place to address the critical need for housing and supportive services of youth transitioning out of failing systems, including foster care. We provide residents with a safe and nurturing place they are proud to call home as they begin the path to becoming independence, self-sufficient adults.


Teresa Sanders
Vice President of Programs


Compared to peers, foster youth are three times less likely to graduate high school and half as likely to complete any college.

Approximately 200 teens age out of foster care annually in Cuyahoga County.

24% of youth find themselves homeless within four years of leaving the foster care system.


We are on a mission to transform the community. Get involved!