Pandemic Aid: New law temporarily expands services for foster youth and alumni

A new federal law now provides temporary funding to help foster youth and alumni of foster care with financial help and services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) was signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020, and provides expanded services for foster youth and alumni of foster care who are 14-26 years old. Nationally, foster youth and alumni of foster care have been advocating for additional supports and services to help them through the pandemic. Our national leaders and government officials listened, and temporary services for foster youth and alumni of foster care were included in the CAA.

This is very exciting news!

Some of the services foster youth and alumni may be eligible for under the temporary guidelines include:

  • Independent Living services to assist with basic needs like cash assistance for food, access to technology for school, and other expenses
  • Room and Board assistance – Idaho has additional and expanded resources to help alumni of foster care get into (or keep) housing
  • Transportation funding to help youth and alumni of foster care get a driver’s license, pay for insurance, take driver’s education, and more
  • Transitional Foster Care so that youth don’t have to age out of foster care during the pandemic
  • Re-entry into foster care for young adults under age 22 who aged out between Oct. 1, 2019, and April 20, 2021
  • Higher education aid – The Education and Training Voucher (ETV) limit is temporarily raised to up to $12,000 annually per individual

To find out if someone is eligible and for additional details, please visit or e-mail Information also is available by calling (208) 334-4932.

Kristen Nate is the Independent Living/Child Well-being Program Specialist in the Division of Family and Community Services in the Department of Health and Welfare.

Join us at 10 a.m. Wednesday on Facebook Live: Kristen Nate will discuss expanded pandemic aid for foster youth and alumni of foster care and then will take questions from viewers. Join us!

To slow the spread of COVID-19 in Idaho, please continue to:

  • Wear face coverings  
  • Keep at least six feet between you and others
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Wash your hands often
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Disinfect surfaces and objects regularly


Stay up-to-date with the latest and most accurate information on COVID-19 at the following websites:

DHW also posts lots of information on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Follow us!

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is dedicated to strengthening the health, safety, and independence of Idahoans. Learn more at

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