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Front Page - Friday, May 20, 2016

Chambliss Center breaks ground on transitional living

Chambliss Center for Children breaks ground on their new transitional living residence. Pictured (L-R): Liz Blasbery, executive director, Chambliss Center for Children Residential Program; Phil Acord, president and CEO of Chambliss Center; Wayne Williams, owner, Workshop: Architecture; Catharine Bahner Daniels, Board Chairwoman, Chambliss Center; Chattanooga City Councilman Yusuf Hakeem; Scott Maclellan, representing the Maclellan Foundation; and Lisa Maclellan. - (Photo provided)

Chambliss Center for Children last week broke ground on residences for their new transitional living program.

In an effort to assist teens “aging out” of the foster care system, many of whom become homeless, Chambliss Center is adding transitional living to their residential program. The groundbreaking was for phase one of the housing aspect of the program, which will include two duplexes, each with two one-bedroom units. In addition to housing, this program will offer counseling and training in basic life skills, such as financial planning, budgeting, cooking, interviewing, and job readiness. The Robert L. & Kathrina H. Maclellan Foundation and The Maclellan Foundation Inc. will provide funding for the duplexes. The project should be completed in four to six months.

In Hamilton County, around 90 children aged out of foster care last year. Teens can stay with a foster family for as long as they are welcome, but teens in a group home, such as the one at Chambliss Center, are required to leave the day they turn 18. These young adults can remain in foster care up to age 21 if they are enrolled in high school or a higher education program.

As youth age out of the foster care system, it is vital that they have a support system in place to help them navigate this transition to adulthood,” says Liz Blasbery, executive director of Chambliss Center’s Residential Program. “Young adults typically need assistance and guidance from their biological families long past the age of 18, leaving many youth in foster care without this safety net. We are excited to have the opportunity to provide this much needed service in our community.”

Source: Chambliss Center for Children