Independent Living Program (ILP)

Photo of a young lady smiling on a city street

The Independent Living Program was authorized by the Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 (Public Law 106-169). The ILP provides training, services, and benefits to assist current and former foster youth in achieving self-sufficiency prior to, and after leaving, the foster care system. In California, each county has the flexibility to design services to meet a wide range of individual needs and circumstances, and to coordinate services with other Federal and State agencies engaged in similar activities.

Who Is Eligible?

Youth are eligible for ILP services from age 16 to the day before their 21st birthday, provided one of the following criteria is met:

  • The youth was/is in foster care at any time from their 16th to their 19th birthday.
  • The youth was placed in out-of-home care by a tribe or tribal organization between their 16th and 19th birthdays.
  • The youth is a former dependent who entered into a kinship guardianship at any age and is receiving/received Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payments (Kin-GAP) between the ages of 16 and 18.
  • The youth is a former dependent who entered into a Non-Related Legal Guardianship (NRLG) after attaining age 8 and is receiving/received permanent placement services.

What Are The Services?

Some of the services provided through ILP include:

  • Daily living skills
  • Money management
  • Decision making
  • Building self-esteem
  • Financial assistance with college or vocational schools
  • Educational Resources
  • Housing (Transitional Housing)
  • Employment

Contact Us

Transition Age Youth Policy Unit
California Department of Social Services
744 P Street, MS 8-13-78
Sacramento, CA 95814

Quick Links

Chafee Educational Training Vouchers Program (ETV)
Transitional Housing Programs (THPP/THP-Plus/THP+FC)
Additional Related Resources
California Youth Connection

Information and Resources

For more information and resources visit the Independent Living Program website. This resource is designed to assist county eligibility workers and other partners who provide services to the public.

If you are a member of the public we encourage you to contact your county social services agency.