The youth-written stories in Represent give inspiration and information to teens in foster care while offering staff insight into those teens’ struggles.

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Independent Living (14 found)
Note: These stories are from Represent and its sister publication, YCteen, which is written by New York City public high school students.
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Lavell shares her experience of applying for, then choosing between low-income public housing and supportive housing for mentally ill New Yorkers. (full text)
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Chimore and her dog Prissy have a special bond that's helped Chimore adjust to life after foster care (full text)
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Samantha finally gets her own place in a Supported Independent Living Program (SILP). A few months later, ACS closes SILPs and she has to go back to living with a foster parent. (full text)
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Chimore breaks down the rewards and hazards of having a credit card. (full text)
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Chimore wants to have a good credit history because she's about to age out of foster care. Then she finds out that her identity has been stolen and fraudulent credit card accounts opened in her name. (full text)
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The college application process can be intimidating; Debra offers some advice that can help. (full text)
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Chantal describes both the benefits and pitfalls of having a bank account. (full text)
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When a fellow resident ages out into homelessness, Michael resolves to make a plan for himself. (full text)
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Ja'Nelle was babied in foster care—staff did her laundry and cooked for her. Her independent living classes were a joke. She wishes she had been taught the skills she needs to function successfully in the real world. (full text)
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Xavier racks up $2,100 in credit card debt before deciding to take control of his finances. (full text)
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When Aurora enters a foster home she expects her foster mother to cook for her, but soon finds out she's expected to make her own meals. The other girls in the home teach Aurora to cook, and in the process she forms friendships with women her age for the first time. (full text)
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When Tamecka goes away to college, she begins missing classes and failing exams, and her first inclination is to blame her foster care background. (full text)
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Sharif faces impatient customers, uncooperative cash registers, and self-doubts during his first day at work. (full text)
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DeAnna writes about her life during the four years following her high school graduation and her journey toward independence. She learns it is a meandering road. (full text)

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