Friend of Youth in Care Award


Each year the award is presented to a caring adult who has exhibited leadership on behalf of youth in foster care. Youth in foster care face many challenges. Caring adults can assist youth who are facing these challenges by providing support, advocacy and friendship. Additionally, there are those people who come up with creative solutions to make the system better for all youth in care. They deserve our thanks.

The Friend of Youth in Care Award will go to those adults who are willing to:


  1. Make a commitment to youth in care

  2. Advocate for youth in care

  3. Be leaders on behalf of youth in care

  4. Be a positive role model for youth in care

Dulcey Laberge

Dulcey Laberge is the statewide Youth Transition Program Manager and supervises all of the Youth Transition Specialists. She works tirelessly to provide opportunities, resources, and support across the state of Maine both behind the scenes and through making meaningful connections with youth. As a part of Dulcey’s role, she sits on numerous workgroups and committees that strive to elevate access to important resources that carry youth through young adulthood. Dulcey approaches this work in creative ways and is always willing to jump into action whether that means presenting on a panel, working alongside a young person, or joining a YLAT meeting. Most recently, she has been the lead on the coordination of the federal C.A.R.E.S. Funding and Consolidated Appropriations Act funding to make sure older youth did not struggle financially during the pan-demic. She ensured youth were contacted, connected, and had access to all eligible funding.
Dulcey is passionate, knowledgeable, and a true supporter and example of a youth-adult partnership. You can often hear her say that she approaches her work with the same consideration, hope, and care that she would if she was working for her own child. As one young person expressed “I will ALWAYS appreciate the things Dulcey has done for me and the support she has given. Both directly, and indirectly over the years. Dulcey has provided advice and encouragement. She's always been honest with her feedback and she is compassionate and passionate. Her success, applied education in her field, and dedication to young people in Maine is admirable. I know I'm not the only one who's been positively impacted and inspired by her.”
YLAT members, staff, alumni, and partners are thrilled to honor Dulcey’s tireless efforts to elevate youth in care in Maine through the Friend of Youth in Care award.

Past FYIC Award Recipients:

2020: Marty Zanghi · 2019: New Beginnings · 2018: New England Youth Coalition (NEYC) · 2017: Penthea Burns · 2016: A Place Called H.O.M.E. · 2015: Jobs for Maine Graduates (JMG) · 2014: Representative Seth Berry & Senator Gratwick · 2013: Laurie Davis · 2012: Jobs for Maine’s Graduates · 2011: Dianna Walters · 2010: William R. Bradford, II · 2009: Bette Hoxie · 2008: James Siragousa · 2007: Bobby Strauss · 2006: Lucky Hollander, Susan Verrill, Susan Kimball, Linda Guiggey · 2005: Heidi Krieger · 2004: Marty Zanghi & the Maine Legislative Youth Council · 2003: Karen Westburg & Maddy Thibeault · 2002: Hugh Sipowicz & Sonya Gerry · 2001: Bill Dickenson · 2000: Representative Michael Brennan

Friend of Youth in Care Awardees