Recently, nearly 70 current and former foster youth (ages 16-20) participated in the 11th Annual Maricopa County Youth Convening. This 24-hour fun and educational lock-in, led by the Department of Child Safety (DCS), took place at the First Baptist Church of Scottsdale.
The event began as a way to create an educational experience for these youth, while giving them the opportunity to meet other youth and have fun during the summer months. Over the years, the event has focused on themes such as housing, employment, self-care and voting.
This year, the youth decided to focus on post-secondary educational options outside of the typical 4-year college route. These young adults learned about community college certificate programs, trade school options, and military programs. They also participated in a talent show, karaoke contest and dance with a resident DJ, who aged out of foster care himself.
With help from supporters like the #LoveUp Foundation and For Goodness Cakes, we were able to provide Carrabba’s for dinner, Papa John’s Pizza at midnight, and of course… DESSERT!
Many of the youth also received a backpack full of school supplies and a sleeping bag, thanks to donations from the community. To ensure a good night of sleep, all of the youth received a brand new pillow, courtesy of Brooklyn Bedding! A huge THANK YOU to Brooklyn Bedding for supporting our youth and this event for the past two years!