Every year, over 800 youth transition out of government care. Many dream of pursuing post-secondary education but that goal often seems unattainable without proper supports. While BC’s Tuition Waiver Program covers tuition and mandatory fees for eligible students attending one of 25 public post-secondary institutions, the Native Education College or 10 Union Institutes across British Columbia, meeting basic living expenses are an ongoing challenge. In fact, it costs a student approximately $26,400 a year for rent, phone, internet, transit, and food.
On an annual basis, the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training invests $250,000 into the Youth Futures Education Fund, which provides low barrier access to funds that support living expenses for youth who have aged out of the foster care system and are attending a post-secondary institution on a tuition waiver.
Thanks to supports like these, more young people are transitioning from government care to adulthood and achieving their potential.
The fund was collaboratively established by: Coast Capital, The Province of British Columbia, and the Office of the Representative for Children and Youth. The Youth Futures Education Fund is guided by an Advisory Committee, held at the Vancouver Foundation and is administered by United Way British Columbia – working with communities in BC’s Interior, Lower Mainland and Central & Northern Vancouver Island.