Check out our archive of recent Enews articles about ILYA!

Family Furniture Donation Makes New Apartments Feel Like Home for ILYA Youth

Last December, after First U member Peggy Rawheiser passed away, her daughter, Debbie Rawheiser Robertson, started talking with her brothers about how fond their mother had been about the church’s ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) program and its mission of supporting youth aging out of the foster care system. Together, they decided it would ......

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SAVE THE DATE! NEW APARTMENT ITEMS DRIVE UP & DROP OFF EVENT FOR ILYA YOUTH – JUNE 26

Youth in Delaware who age out of the foster care system and choose to enter the State’s Independent Living Program until they are 21 can receive assistance in the form of rent vouchers. They must find housing and either attend school or be employed in order to stay in the program. While they learn to ......

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Supportive Adults Vital to Youth Aging out of Foster Care

The ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) team would like to share a link to a wonderful ABC News story about a 19-year-old in Florida who aged out of the foster care system and was adopted by her former caseworker. Click here to view the video. As the article notes, for teens who are aging ......

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Sweet Gifts to ILYA Youth from The Bee Whisperer

Many of you may know Doyle Dobbins, a member of First U since the 1970’s and a long-time member of the UU Service Committee (UUSC), through which he is dedicated to promoting First U principles and values. His hobby as a bee keeper and honey farmer for over 30 years encompasses similar ideals – respect, ......

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CAN YOUR GROUP HELP PROVIDE LAPTOPS FOR ILYA GRADUATES?

ILYA’s annual Graduation Celebration is coming up in another month or two to honor those young adults in New Castle County who have been in foster care as teens and who are graduating this spring, a big achievement for these youth. Some of the ILYA funds which church members and friends have so generously donated ......

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Tax Time and Graduations are Here: Two Ways To Support ILYA Youth

With tax time and graduation season upon us, it is a particularly important – and often anxious – time for many of the youth in our Independent Living for Young Adults (ILYA) program. It is also an opportunity for First U members to help meet very specific needs of these young adults who lack the ......

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ILYA Reaches 16th Year of Supporting Youth in Foster Care

Did you know that ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) has been serving youth and young adults aging out of the foster care system in New Castle County since 2005? This social justice effort was started by members of First U who recognized there was a clear need in the community to support these youth ......

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ILYA Launches New Brochure

We are excited to share that Independent Living for Young Adults (ILYA) now has an official new program brochure! It provides a history, an overview of ILYA projects, testimonials and ways volunteers and donors can support the youth in the program. Refreshing the old brochure is another step in our concentrated communications plan. We believe ......

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HIP HIP HOORAY FOR OUR ILYA STUDENT CARE PACKAGE VOLUNTEERS!!

During this past school year, thirteen volunteers have been participating in the ILYA Student Care Package project led by Deb Griffin and assisted by Pauline Koch. Throughout the school year, these volunteers have sent “care” packages with items such as snacks and other goodies, school supplies, dorm decorations, household supplies, gift cards and more! They ......

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How are Youth Referred for Our ILYA Services?

When a youth in foster care turns 16 years of age, an Independent Living (IL) coordinator is assigned to assist the youth to prepare for the transition to adulthood. The IL workers are contracted by the State’s Division of Family Services (DFS) from three non-profit agencies in New Castle County: People’s Place II, Progressive Life ......

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Surprising Gift to ILYA

How touching it was to open the mail for the Independent Living for Young Adults (ILYA) program last week and find a check made out to the church designated for ILYA. The gift was from a former beneficiary of our Student Care Package project, Nicole Magnusson! Nicole made the donation in memory of Melinda Byers, ......

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Thank You from the ILYA Team

Thank you to everyone who attended Special Offering Sunday on February 14th! We hope, after learning more about ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) and hearing directly from one of the youth we support, that you feel more connected to this wonderful social justice program at First U. Many, many thanks to those members who ......

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Share Your Love for ILYA this Sunday

Did you know that the support of the ILYA Program from you, the First U congregation, has assisted young adults as they transition out of foster care and into independent living for the past 16 years? If you want to learn more about the impact of your gifts, then this Sunday, February 14, is for ......

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ILYA Special Offering: February 14th!

Our February Special Offering is right around the corner on Valentine’s Day, February 14th! It’s the perfect day to celebrate ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) at First U during our “BeLOVEd Community” theme month. Get a sneak peak into the program! Learn more about the impact ILYA is making on young adults aging out ......

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SAVE THE DATE FOR SHARE THE PLATE! SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 14th

Our Second Sunday Special Offering is an opportunity to celebrate ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) at First U. While Share the Plate will look and feel different this year, you still won’t want to miss the chance to learn about the ways your support benefits young adults who are transitioning from foster care to ......

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HOLIDAY GIVING PROJECT UPDATE

The ILYA (Independent Living for Young Adults) Holiday Giving Project was a great success thanks to your generosity! Over 120 donors participated, including non-members, and we collected slightly more than $7,500. Thank you to all who donated, shopped, wrapped and worked behind the scenes to make the holidays so special for youth who otherwise would ......

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TEENAGERS IN FOSTER CARE

When foster care is mentioned, what comes to mind is an image of an innocent baby or toddler, or maybe even a sad-looking school-age child. Fewer folks, however, are aware that teenagers enter foster care. Yet, approximately 40% of children and youth in foster care on average in Delaware are ages 13-18. This percentage is ......

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