Connecticut Youth Alliance (CYA), the youth empowerment program of Children In Placement, offers teen-age foster youth and their at-risk peers a constructive program that inspires them to continue schooling, teaches them marketable skills and provides opportunities for positive growth and development.
Through a variety of youth-led initiatives, classes and workshops, CYA youth are empowered to create a positive change within themselves and their communities by sharing their unique experience and talents with peers, agency leaders and policymakers. CYA fosters leadership, independence and professional development by giving youth opportunities to actively participate in the decision making process and interact with our community partners.
CYA was developed in 2004 from a realization that the children from out-of-home placements were the best to advocate for changes in the systems that control their lives. In 2007, with a grant from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, CYA youth and staff traveled to California to see first hand a successful foster youth empowerment program called California Youth Connection. The CYA program is seen by National CASA as a leading model of programs for youth “aging out” of the foster care system, and has consistently worked with National CASA to develop similar programs across the country. Visit Connecticut Youth Alliance online at www.ctyouthalliance.org