Friends of the Children

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Grantee Information

Federal Award: $4 million over four years (2016-2020)
Focus Area:  Youth Development
Geographic Focus: Nationwide 

Friends of the Children (FOTC) is a nationwide organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of generational poverty through salaried, professional mentoring.   FOTC will use its SIF grant to improve youth development outcomes for low-income and foster care children who are most at risk of delinquency, school failure and early parenting. SIF will support FOTC to expand the FOTC model by investing in organizations that are ready to grow in communities where need is greatest, and by providing technical assistance, capacity building supports and rigorous evaluation to ensure sustainable results.


Entities Receiving Social Innovation Fund Awards from Friends of the Children

Friends of the Children -- San Francisco Bay Area
Friends of the Children -- Seattle



Friends of the Children -- San Francisco Bay Area
San Francisco, CA
Area Served: San Francisco, CA
Initial Award Amount: $200,000

The SIF award, together with the match it has already raised will support the launch of a new Friends of the Children – San Francisco Bay Area Chapter to begin serving its first class of children in the Spring of 2017. Over the next four years, Friends – San Francisco plans to enroll 128 youth (32 youth per year). Friends – San Francisco will concentrate its efforts in the Bayview Hunters Point (BHP) neighborhood of San Francisco, which was identified by the Brookings institute as one of five “extreme poverty” neighborhoods in the city.

In 2015, the SF Juvenile Department reported that 17% of all referred youth lived in BHP – twice the rate of any other neighborhood. BHP has historically suffered the most violence in the city – 33% of the city’s homicides occurred there in 2015, up 31% from the prior year. The child maltreatment rate in BHP is three times the city average. 80% of students receive free or reduced lunch and African American students make up 50 to 70% of the school population. Friends – San Francisco will select youth in kindergarten from three BHP schools, pairing them with a salaried, professional mentor for 12.5 years, through their high school graduation.



Friends of the Children -- Seattle
Seattle, WA
Area Served: Seattle/King County
Initial Award Amount: $300,000

The Social Innovation Fund award will support Friends – Seattle to double the number of children served over the next four years (an increase of 128 youth). Friends-Seattle will enroll 32 youth each of the four years of the grant award: Half of those youth each year (16/year) will be selected from the foster care system, half (16/year) will be kindergarteners with the highest number of risk factors coming from high poverty schools.

Friends – Seattle has a 16 year history implementing the Friends of the Children Model in Seattle/King County. The youth Seattle proposes to serve as it expands its program through SIF live in low-income neighborhoods in the Seattle area, primarily in the Rainier Valley, Central District, and South King County. Data compiled by a third-party evaluator focusing on youth Seattle has served to date shows that: 97% are eligible for free/reduced price lunch; 55% have a parent who has been incarcerated; 96% were born to a teen parent; 35% have a parent who has experienced domestic violence; and 96% are not involved with their biological mother or father on a daily basis. More than half (51%) of youth in the Seattle program have lived with relatives or been formally involved in the foster care system. 

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