KidsPeace Receives Grant to Create Mentoring Program for Youth in Foster Care in Columbia County, Pennsylvania

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BLOOMSBURG, PA (July 26, 2023) – KidsPeace announced that it has received a grant of $7,250 to create a mentoring program for youth in foster care in Columbia County, Pennsylvania.

The grant was received from Community Giving Foundation: Berwick, which awarded it to KidsPeace’s Foster Care and Community Programs office in Bloomsburg, PA.  The office currently offers an Independent Living Program for foster youth that teaches them life skills that are key to their becoming self-sufficient after aging out of foster care.  (Among skills taught as a result of the program: applying for and maintaining a job and/or college, money management, nutrition, housing and transportation, and etiquette and relationships.)

KidsPeace said the new grant would allow it to develop an enhancement to the Independent Living programming.  Called Cherished Connections Mentoring, the enhanced program will match current youth in foster care with a positive, caring adult in the community.  These adults will serve as life skills advocates and provide a “listening” presence, while also introducing the young people to new opportunities, empowering them to make responsible decisions on their future, and acting as companions in pursuing activities of shared interest.

In the enhanced program, mentors from the community will be identified and recruited by KidsPeace staff to work with adolescents on preparing for an eventual departure from foster care.  The youth participants will be referred to the program from Columbia County Children & Youth Services.

The program is modeled on a mentoring program operated by Adams County Children & Youth, which is working with KidsPeace on the structure and policies of the Cherished Connections Mentoring program.  The KidsPeace Cherished Connections Mentoring program is expected to be in place by the latter half of 2023. (Individuals interested in learning more about becoming a mentor in the program can contact Kelly Little at

The Community Giving Foundation got its start in the Berwick community in 1998 from the sale of the Berwick Hospital to for-profit ownership. For over 20 years, the Foundation has remained committed to charitable causes that benefit residents in the greater Berwick area. Through funds from individuals, families, and organizations, the Foundation continues to invest in the well-being of its community. For more information visit the Foundation’s website at

Since 1882, KidsPeace has been building on its expertise to give hope, help and healing to children, adults and those who love them. Through its comprehensive range of residential treatment programs; accredited educational services; unique psychiatric hospital and foster care and community-based programs, KidsPeace is dedicated to helping people connect, transform and overcome their challenges to ensure a stable future, transition to adulthood and gain independence. Since its doors opened, nearly 300,000 children have participated in one of the multitude of programs KidsPeace offers.

For additional resources or more information on how to get involved, become a foster parent or make a donation, please visit Follow us at or on Twitter @KidsPeace.


Information Provided By:
Robert Martin
Director of Communications