The Tennessee Department of Children’s Services (DCS) selected SMA, Inc., to implement a set of core strategies that improve the lives of young people aging out of foster care and the systems that serve them. DCS is partnering with the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative (Jim Casey), a national foundation that brings together the people, systems, and resources necessary to make sure youth leaving foster care system make successful transitions to adulthood.  SMA was selected by DCS to implement the work in Memphis.

Dream Seekers provides services for young people, ages 14 to 25, who have been in foster care. Dream Seekers offers services including:

  • Training in money management and Individual Development Accounts (IDA), in which participants’ savings will be matched dollar-for-dollar up to $1,000 annually;
  • Connections, education and “door openers” around six key outcome areas: permanance, education, employment, housing, physical and metal health, and personal and community engagement.
  • Drug and alcohol counseling;
  • HIV/AIDS testing;
  • Classes in anger management, goal-setting, parenting, and more;
  • An invitation to be part of the Youth Leadership Board.

Scroll below for a feature on SMA’s Dream Seekers and the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative that aired on WREG.  Additional media coverage:

Click here to see Eyewitness News interview.
Click here to see Fox TV News interview.
Click here to read article in the Tri-State Defender.
Click here to read article on the MemphisConnect Blog.