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COMPASS Programs

COMPASS Training Program

COMPASS Training Program

The COMPASS Training Program (CTP) is one of David & Margaret's most unique programs, and one of few programs of its type in California. The CTP takes an individualized approach in supporting the employment and educational goals of the young adult participants. This customized approach allows for each youth to gain the skills they need to be self-sustaining adults, while encouraging them to explore their strengths and interests and apply them to employment and or higher education.

Our Employment and Education Specialist and TAY Mentors work individually with each young adult meeting them at their level, and providing them with internship placement, case management as well as employment exploration for direct hire opportunities.  Throughout the internship, participants are provided paid work experience,  1:1 support, and a curriculum of employment readiness classes tailored to address the needs and barriers inclusive to this population ensuring their are gaining skills that will allow them to not only gain but also retain employment. These courses range from how to make a good first impression, filling out a resume, building a resume, and more. 

The CTP also emphasizes the importance of higher education and vocational training among young adults and offers academic case management and support. The participants are provided with information for local higher education institutes in the area as well as the programs and benefits they are eligible for. Student Strategy workshops are also provided where participants are given 1:1 assistance in the admissions process, FAFSA completion, college navigation, and as well as tours and guidance on qualifying support programs.  

This program provides a variety of opportunities.

  • Life skills
  • Assistance completing high school or GED
  • Industry overviews including career pathways
  • Overview of steps necessary to enroll in community college
  • Tutoring
  • Career mixers
  • Volunteering opportunities
  • Access to the education/employment specialist
  • Access to weekly case management
  • Linkage to childcare resources
  • Paid workplace internships in partnership with local businesses
  • Job-shadowing opportunities
  • And more

If you are a youth interested in the CTP or know of someone who would benefit from this program, please contact us at COMPASS@davidandmargaret.org.


If you would like more information about how you  or your company can support youth aging out of foster care, please fill out this form and let us know in the comments what ways you would like to share your expertise. Not sure? Thats ok too, we are happy to explore the possibilities with you. 

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COMPASS Spotlight: Mark!

For Transitional Aged Youth (TAY), aging out of the foster care system is daunting. Most youth are not prepared for independence and lack access to basics like food, housing, education, and jobs. Over the past decade, there has been a focus on providing these resources to TAY to assist their transition to adulthood and independence. COMPASS Programs is a new group of programs created by David and Margret Youth and Family Services to address the unique challenges that TAY face.

Mark came to COMPASS Programs in 2016 after aging out of his group home, his social worker referred him to David & Margaret’s Transitional Housing Program. He was placed in transitional housing (housing that is paid for by the county Department of Children and Family Services and usually lasts about two years). Mark started engaging in services provided by COMPASS, like life skills training and building a savings account. He began going to college and is currently pursuing a degree in Communications and Business, which he hopes will translate into a stable career path. He also obtained a job working the front desk at his school. Although the office he works in is closed due to COVID-19, he has been able to retain steady employment throughout his time at COMPASS.

On the services he has received from the program, Mark says, “[COMPASS] made it easier because I had to work to live through early adulthood.” He cited housing as the greatest resource provided by the program because he was able to save money while working and going to school and did not have to worry about being able to pay rent and risk losing his housing.

Like many other TAY, Mark struggles with anxiety and has been working with his COMPASS Program support team to develop coping skills to address it. Mark says that he uses “self-talk” to help keep his anxiety levels low. Mark’s case manager has been very impressed by his growth during his time in the program and says, “he is a very kind and driven person ... an honest person who will tell me if a certain coping skill isn’t working ... that has helped him progress.” Because of Mark’s hard work, and with a little support from COMPASS Programs he is on track to graduate from college and begin a stable career. All of us at COMPASS Programs are so proud of Mark’s growth and look forward to seeing what he accomplishes.


COMPASS Programs is now accepting applicants! If you or someone you know could benefit from the services offered through COMPASS Programs, email COMPASS@davidandmargaret.org or talk to your case manager to start the application process!

Our Impact This Year

  • Youth & Families Served

    785

  • Volunteer Hours

    1148

  • Youth Internship Hours

    231

  • Housing Provided

    46

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