TUESDAY, NOV 19LUNCH PLENARY
PANEL DISCUSSION: YOUTH AGING OUT OF CARE
Young people aging out of BC’s foster care system face an uncertain future, with little financial or emotional support as they transition into adulthood and living independently. This panel brings together youth housing experts, people with lived experience, and housing providers for a frank discussion about how we can better serve vulnerable young people leaving care, and ensure they have a brighter future ahead.
DR. JENNIFER CHARLESWORTH
Dr. Jennifer Charlesworth, BC’s Representative for Children and Youth, was appointed in October 2018 after working for more than 40 years in the social and healthcare sectors. She is an award-winning teacher, author and activist.
Emily Jackson is the Youth Engagement Coordinator with the Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness. She will share her experiences of aging out of foster care, and the policy shifts needed to better support young people in the system.
Katherine McParland is a BC Housing board member and the Executive Director of A Way Home Kamloops, which works to end youth homelessness. As a youth, McParland lived in numerous foster homes and became homeless at 19. In 2016, A Way Home Kamloops organized the first youth homeless count in Canada.
Jeska Slater is a Nehiyah Iskwew from Fisher River Cree Nation in Manitoba. Slater has been facilitating in and for Indigenous communities for 10 years and is the Indigenous Social Innovation Coordinator for Surrey’s Skookum Lab. She chaired the Surrey Indigenous Youth Housing Coalition in 2016, which sought housing solutions for Indigenous youth leaving care.