Since 1991, Maine has held a state-wide conference each year for teens in foster care. YLAT staff at the Muskie School have collaborated with youth in foster care and DHHS to plan all of the teen conferences, participants include youth in care, foster and adoptive parents, DHHS staff, and agency staff. The conference provides opportunities to learn and connect with each other.
Teen conference workshops focus on helping youth to prepare for young adulthood. Youth have reported positive experiences in connecting with peers, learning information to help them achieve their goals, and gaining an understanding of resources and opportunities available to them.
"It was great to be with other youth in care…with others who knew how it felt. I was inspired to join when another youth talked about her own experiences."