Family and Youth Initiative

Learn more or take the next step to being a mentor, host parent, adoptive parent, or event driver. DCFYI orientation, Tuesday January 12.

RSVP from the website calendar.


Giving Thanks for Lasting Relationships - hear from DCFYI participants on the importance of this program and the relationships they've made. On the DCFYI blog (with more posts coming in the next week). 

Bonus Kid.

He spent years bouncing between foster homes. At 16, Brandon now has his forever family.

Penn student who aged out of foster care wins prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.

'The children have blessed us,' say these Triad-area families who adopted older kids.

DC Superior Court | Adoption Day 2020 with Barbara Harrison.

How do you find a home for a foster child at a time like this?

What happens to some L.G.B.T.Q. teens when their parents reject them.

How to keep connecting with strangers during the pandemic.

For us, this is personal: Why congress must provide COVID relief to youth with experience in foster care now


Want to see more? Like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter. We post links of interest on both feeds.

DCFYI is now on Instagram! Follow us there!



Your support means more teens in foster care will have lifelong connections with caring adults and find adoptive families.

Connecting teens, creating families, changing lives

Ready to put 2020 behind us

This year has certainly not been what any of us might have anticipated.

2020 has been challenging even for those whose health, family, or finances have not been directly affected. For some, the year has been much worse.

We were tested here at Family & Youth Initiative. Along with missing other friends and family, we have missed our weekend events and getting to see DCFYI youth and volunteers. Many teens have shared the activity they can't wait to do when we get back to in person events. Each of us have activities we're missing. But even more, we are missing the opportunity to talk and laugh (and eat) together. This community is so important to so many people. Getting together allows us to reconnect and continue to deepen relationships.

In the spring, we worried about the young adults recently aged out of foster care and not yet financially self-sufficient who suddenly and unexpectedly became unemployed, usually with limited savings to tide them over. Other young people faced online classes and being cut off from important peer relationships.

And while the ensuing months have not been easy, we know it would have been much worse if these young people had not had all of you in their lives.

We are so grateful to everyone who has supported DCFYI and these amazing young people - whether financially, offering tutoring help, opening their home to youth who needed a place to live, moving furniture for new apartments, help with job searches (and figuring out unemployment), and for the mentors and host parents and others who have stayed in regular touch and helped DCFYI participants get through this most extraordinary of years. It is frankly amazing that every young person who had housing has stayed housed, very few have quit school, and for most participants, life is looking up. 

We are looking forward to 2021: being able to come together in person again and bringing many more teens into the program so they can be part of this amazing community. We are also planning to adapt / expand programing for youth aging out of foster care so we can wrap more support around them in the first, most challenging years of adulthood.

Please consider a year-end donation to help us reach more teens in foster care as well as those who have aged out of care and continue to need support.

We could not do this without you; thank you for what you have made possible this year and for what you will help us do in the year/s to come.

Stay safe, stay masked; we look forward to seeing you soon,

Upcoming Events

December 12 – Holiday Gift Giving

December 13 - Gingerbread House Making (virtually).

With colder weather and increasing covid numbers, we will be holding virtual events only until the spring.

Event details on the DCFYI website calendar. Please contact Chanelle for information and to RSVP.

Thank you! 

Thank you to everyone who has contributed toward gifts for DCFYI youth! We are missing our annual holiday party but so grateful that DCFYI participants are still feeling the collective love.

Truly this is icing on the cake of so much support from so many of you that has helped DCFYI youth get through this most difficult of years.

Thank you.


2020 Charitable Giving

Did you know? The CARES Act increases the size of donations you can deduct when you file your 2020 income taxes.

This one-time adjustment makes December the perfect time to do your charitable giving, whether to DCFYI or other non-profits you support! 

More information is on the DCFYI website.

Will Amazon be part of your holiday shopping?

If yes, support DCFYI when you shop. When you buy through AmazonSmile, a small percentage of what you spend comes back to DCFYI as a donation. Go to and choose Family and Youth Initiative as your charity. We benefit and there is not cost to you.

Thank you!

515 M Street SE
Suite 217
Washington, DC 20003

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