Barriers Foster Youth Face and the Pivotal Impact

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THEY FACE UNIMAGINABLE BARRIERS. Today, more than 400,000 American kids are in foster care. Right here in Silicon Valley, the innovation capital of the world, thousands of foster youth are falling through the cracks.

Barriers to success

89% of foster youth want to attend college but only 3% earn a bachelor's degree

44% of Santa Clara County foster youth are chronically absent from high school




drop out of high school

25% are homeless

of foster youth are performing below grade level



have little or no work experience


are incarcerated

of foster youth receive special education services

Average rate that teens in foster care move during high school

Photo of Pivotal Scholar, Noah, at Gavilan College 4

By age 20

Through no fault of their own, foster youth find themselves facing barriers most young people never have to overcome. Constantly moving homes and changing schools, adapting to new places, and grappling with persistent trauma can be nearly impossible to manage. With so much instability, their dreams and future often take a back seat.

THE PIVOTAL IMPACT. In the 2019-2020 academic year, your generous contributions to Pivotal helped us make a deep and lasting impact. Pivotal scholars graduate college at

92% the rate of their foster youth peers

552 high school & college youth served


college scholarships awarded


of high school scholars would recommend Pivotal to other foster youth

of 2020 summer internships completed



of our post-secondary scholars completed career exploration and/or declared a college major

of graduating seniors completed their FASFA application by the March deadline to receive full federal & state financial aid packages



program retention rate among youth in college

of Pivotal alumni want to pay it forward by mentoring a younger foster youth

To all the Pivotal donors out there, you are changing our lives! Thank you! – Mac H., Pivotal Alumnus 6

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