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 transition-age 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 18 to 24 years of age transitioning from failing systems – including foster care. This program provides services, support and inspiration to transition-age youth.

Housing alone is not the solution. Our Nurturing Independence & Aspirations (NIA – pronounced knee-ah) program provides voluntary supportive services to anyone living in or anyone who has moved on from housing at Independence Place. NIA case management and supportive services make successful outcomes possible. 

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. Independence Place currently consists of 23 efficiency apartments. 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.


Jerome Baker
Community Engagement Supervisor


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.

100% of young people living in Independence Place were previously homeless.


We are on a mission for social justice. Get involved!