AUSTIN: Up to $9 million in pandemic relief will soon be available for young adult Texans who were once in the state’s foster care system, as well as for youth currently in the extended care program.

The federal funding will flow through a program known as Young Adult Pandemic Aid, or PanAid. It’s being administered by the Texas Center for Child and Family Studies (a supporting organization of the Texas Alliance of Child and Family Services) and Monarch Family Services, a Houston-based nonprofit organization focused on family preservation, foster care and adoption services.

Texans who were recently served in foster care, or who were in extended foster care up until they turned 26, can apply for the funding starting Aug. 10. 

PanAid is designed to help with immediate and basic needs such as rent, groceries, and cell phone bills — and to help these young people get back on their feet after the tribulations posed by the pandemic.

“This pandemic has been a struggle for everyone, and it’s added to the challenges facing young adults who were in Texas’ foster care system as kids,” said Katie Olse, CEO of the Texas Alliance of Child and Family Services. “These grants will bring crucial help to Texans who need it.”

The program is targeted at young adults between 18-26 years old who have aged out of foster care or are in extended foster care. Funding and support services for these adults often end at age 21, so the time-limited PanAid program offers a unique and needed boost to young adults who have struggled through the pandemic.

The funding will be delivered through community-level partner organizations in every part of the state. Child-placing agencies, shelters, and universities with supervised independent living programs can apply to be part of the PanAid program through Sept. 1 — learn more and apply here.

“We’re grateful that this opportunity has opened up for young people who need help — and we’re excited to work with community partners to help them take advantage of it,” said Valerie D. Jackson, Founder of Monarch Family Services. “We hope PanAid will make a difference for these young Texans.”

Dr. Valerie D. Jackson