Aging Out Initiative

Career Development

Fishhook International

CASE STUDY: Girls Restoration Initiative / Home for Girls

Fishhook International, based in Lexington, Kentucky, is building support for work in India to care for widows and orphans, to mentor and train leaders and to launch sustainable community development initiatives.

Amongst many initiatives one that stands out is The Girls Restoration Initiative, which provides life skills to young women who are in an extremely vulnerable situation in the slums of Kolkata.  The program provides training to 20 girls at a time train either in computer skills or tailoring. Each girl goes to the training center for a half day every day for one year to complete the program; at the end of the year they are equipped to land a job and provide for themselves and their families.

The Home for Girls in Bangalore is another ministry that provides vocational training and a loving residential environment for teenage girls.  Not only do the girls develop a life skill they can use to support themselves financially, but they also receive Biblical counseling and mentoring.  Many of them have suffered emotional trauma and mental distress because of the past circumstances they have endured. The goal of the ministry is to help them find healing and wholeness in the Lord as well as a vocational skill so that they live as healthy women who can raise healthy families of their own.


Email Kim Turkington, Executive Director

Visit Fishhook International

The Global Orphan Project (GO Project)

CASE STUDY: GO Transition Academy

The Global Orphan Project exists to expand the capacity of the churches from Kansas City to Kampala to care for children and families in crisis.  GO Project’s ministry focuses on orphan care, orphan prevention, and transition.  With respect to transition, when children age-out in Haiti, they are able to then attend the GO Transition Academy – which is a two-year Job and Life Skills Development Program with a central emphasis on Biblical character development.

The GO Transition Academy provides hands-on job skills development through three skills-based programs: Agriculture, Apparel Production, and Diesel Mechanic/Driving School, Life Skills, and Character Development.


Email Jake Barreth, Director of International Orphan Care

Email Ryan Hudnall, Director of Engagement

Visit The GO Project

Lifesong for Orphans

CASE STUDY: Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Business

Lifesong for Orphans does job training, and encourages entrepreneurship and sustainable business development among aging-out orphans and for families providing orphan care. One great example is Andrei and Sergey’s story of how they created a plant nursery with the knowledge and skills they had received.


Email Andy Lehman, Vice President, Lifesong for Orphans

Visit Lifesong for Orphans

Watch Andrei and Sergey’s Story, Ukraine

Harvesters Reaching The Nations

CASE STUDY: Education Program

Harvesters Reaching the Nations currently have two locations in South Sudan where they serve those in need by providing food, clothing, shelter, discipleship, education, and health care to orphans and vulnerable women.

Their Education Program is focused on providing their orphans and kids from the community with primary level education. Upon completion of their Primary School program, teachers and advisors evaluate students to determine which education path they will continue on. Some students will continue on to Secondary School and University, for other students with different skill sets they will attend a Vocational School – the Joshua & Esther Vocational Training Center on the Yei campus – which will provide opportunities for each student to learn specialized skill-sets applicable within the South Sudanese culture.


Email Peter Porsche

Visit Harvesters Reaching the Nations

Orphan Helpers

CASE STUDY: Orphan Helpers Vocational Training

Orphan Helpers exists to serve and minister to the physical, spiritual, emotional and educational needs of orphaned, abused and incarcerated children by effectively partnering with individuals, businesses, churches, organizations and governments. Orphan Helpers educates and trains more than 800 children and youth daily in Central American, government-owned and operated orphanages and detention centers. Orphan Helpers employs in-country staff who are teachers, caregivers and counselors, providing grade-school classes, PC literacy, vocational skills, and English as a second language. Vocational training programs include cosmetology, sewing, woodworking, and jewelry and small goods production.


Visit Orphan Helpers


CASE STUDY: Vocational Training Program

VisionTrust serves Asia, Africa, and the United States by partnering with local leaders; each of these local leaders were already working with impoverished children in their communities, but lacked the resources necessary to make a deeper impact.

In April 2015 VisionTrust reached a significant milestone having 21 orphans graduate from their vocational training program in Bangui, Central African Republic.  The training began as a solution for older students in the VisionTrust program who were struggling to receive their high school diploma – thus the vocational training program was born.  The girls participate in sewing class, the guys participate in carpentry training, and together they were taught about small business principles. Upon completion of the course and receiving their Certificate of Completion each student was given supplies to being earning a living – the ladies received hand-crank sewing machines and the guys received a set of hand tools and fund for initial carpentry materials.


Email Eric Scheberl, Director of International Child Development

Visit VisionTrust

Pure & Faultless / Last Bell Ministries

CASE STUDY: Restoration Project

Pure & Faultless works throughout Haiti, Rwanda, Uganda, Ukraine, and the United States to connect the passions of professionals in developing countries with the resources and passions of believers in the United States.  Each country has a specific focus and/or project where they are reaching the vulnerable around the world.

In Ukraine, Pure & Faultless is in partnership with Last Bell Ministries for The Restoration Project. This specific project teaches former orphans who have aged out of the system vocational skills, provides training and consistent income for young men to participate on their construction crew, and provides shelter for former orphanage residents and their young families.


Email Anthony Salem, Executive Director

Visit Pure & Faultless

LOCO Ministries

CASE STUDY: Revive Program

LOCO Ministries exists to serve the orphans of Mexico. We do this by connecting individuals, teams, businesses, professionals, and churches in the United States and Mexico to care for the fatherless. LOCO Ministries is committed to Living Out Christian Obedience by defending the cause of the fatherless.

We believe God has a plan for every child. Through LOCO’s Revive program we focus on teens and young adults who are aging out of the orphan system. They are often overlooked and have no hope for a brighter future. With an emphasis on family based transitional living, Revive provides high school and/or college education, counseling, housing, and meals all centered around family based care in order to raise up strong, committed Christians who will become independent and will make a difference in their community, country and world. The students in Revive are learning, growing, changing, and taking ownership of their lives to break the destructive generational cycles from their past.


Email Micah Gallegos, Executive Director

Visit LOCO Ministries

Hope Unlimited

CASE STUDY: Hope Unlimited Vocational Training

Hope Unlimited provides care and much more, including vocational training, for former street children and orphans in Campinas, Brazil.  Hope helps young people in their care to transition successfully to life as adults, and is creating the “Hope Institute,” to train other organizations that that desire to replicate their model.

Hope Unlimited’s young men and women train in a wide range of professional trades/skills, dependent upon local market needs. They also intern with local businesses for a year and live at a transition home for six months. Upon graduation (around the age of 18) each Hope student is guaranteed a job and is given ongoing support through the Graduate Center. Each graduate receives basic household furnishings and a complete set of tools for the trade he or she has learned. In the 20 years since Hope was founded, more than 1,000 children have gone through its program.

Two years after graduating from the program some 80 percent of graduates are employed. Nearly 70 percent are in stable living situations, and involved in the church.


Email David Nowell, President, Hope Unlimited

Visit Hope Unlimited

4Kids of South Florida

CASE STUDY: Spirit of Success Institute

4KIDS, located in South Florida created the Spirit of Success Institute (SOSI), which was born out of the desire to build community and offer real resources for success to young adults. 4KIDS Spirit of Success Institute (SOSI) exists to guide young men and women as they transition out of foster care and into independence. SOSI offers a 2-year Transitional Independent Living residential program.

Since its start in 2005, SOSI has served over 180 residents. Today, SOSI consists of 2 homes for young men and 2 homes for young women in Broward County. Each home consists of 4 residents and 2 Residential Advisors (RA). RA’s are there for guidance, accountability, and community—in fact, some of our RA’s are former SOSI residents!SOSI residents gain confidence to transition into independence through completing their GED or furthering their education, gaining employment skills, as well as completing career development resources and internships, life skills classes, and financial management training. Most importantly, residents develop relationships and connections with staff and volunteers who help guide and mentor them in successful living.


Email De Kelly

Visit 4Kids of South Florida

Orphan Relief and Rescue (ORR)

CASE STUDY: Vocational Training / Apprenticeship 

Orphan Relief and Rescue (ORR) was founded in 2007 in respond to the nature and magnitude of violence and neglect of orphaned children in West Africa. Currently ORR is working to stop trafficking of children and to provide furthered education and/or trade skills to children aging out of orphanages.

Orphan Relief and Rescue has partnered with a Hotelerie School on the campus of an orphanage in Benin, which teaches young adults skills relevant to the hotel industry – baking, cooking, catering, hosting events etc. when done with the three years of schooling, the students will be qualified to work in the hotel industry throughout the nation.

Success story – several young adults started a three-year apprenticeship program to learn a trade and receive their high school diploma.


Email Stefan Lako, Programs Director

Visit Orphan Relief and Rescue

Hands and Feet Project

CASE STUDY: Transitional Care Villages

Hands and Feet Project is based in Haiti and strives to provide family-style, residential care and sustainable solutions to fight against Haiti’s orphan crisis. H&F strives to serve each child in four areas of need: physical, educational, emotional, and spiritual.

Hands and Feet’s model of hope is through operating Children’s Villages with multiple family-style homes lead by Haitian House Mothers. At the age of 18 every child has the option of leaving the campus as an adult, or they can stay at one of their Transitional Care Villages until they are 22.  The children who enter into the transition program enter into a contractual agreement regarding their behavior and work/study requirement.  Children will have the opportunity to work in an apprenticeship and develop a career for their bright futures.


Email Andrea McGinnis, Director of Child Care

Visit Hands and Feet Project

The Bair Foundation Child & Family Ministries

CASE STUDY: Independent Living

The Bair Foundation serves children & families throughout Kentucky, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.  Their goal is to provide Christ-centered, quality care and services dedicated to the treatment, restoration and empowerment of children, youth and families.

The Bair Foundation has a focus on Independent Living – as they see the vital need for these youth who are aging out to have the skills and education needed prior to transitioning into adulthood.  The Bair Foundation improves the outcomes for older youth by providing training & focusing on the following areas necessary to become self-reliant: Daily Living Skills, Self-Care, Employment, Education, Healthcare, Housing, Banking & Budgeting, and Transportation.

Bair has taken the essential steps to provide additional opportunities to further increase the probability of a successful transition. Through their vehicle program (Paul Smith Independent Living Fund), which provides matching funds up to $1,000, youth have been given the incentive and ability to achieve transportation that is vital to their independence. Bair’s renewable scholarship fund (Edward B. Massey Scholarship Fund) that is based on need and available to every Bair high school senior, has enabled their youth to achieve their goals and dreams of attending a college, university or trade school. Also provided to the scholarship recipients are monthly care packages, mentoring, and continued guidance while attending school.


Email Dorie Alcaro

Visit The Bair Foundation

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We seek your best-practice stories of ministries that are succeeding in helping aging out orphans and children in foster care to make healthy life transitions. Our goal is that this page be a growing library of best practices from around the world.

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