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Youth Empowerment Strategies for Success


Youth Empowerment Strategies for Success (YESS) is a comprehensive and integrated program that unites community partners and academic leaders to empower foster youth to successfully transition into independent living. Using the 3R approach, the YESS program provides services that focus on life skills training and academic performance with the objective of achieving self-sufficiency, college degree or certificate completion, and employment.

3Rs of Success
  • Rigor: Challenging, confidence building, interactive, and outcome-oriented learning experiences that addresses the needs of youth
  • Relevancy: Multi-level training and practical learning opportunities that correspond to real life situations
  • Relationships: A continuum of service through which college and YESS staff model and promote the cultivation of permanent relationships with caring adults
For Fiscal Year 2013/14, College of the Sequoias' YESS Program will serve approximately 35 Tulare County youth, with a focus on Employment, Education, Financial Literacy, Mental Health Wellness, and Daily Living Skills, as well as helping the youth to identify and nurture life-long connections for ongoing support once they age out of foster care.  The classes include hands-on activities that make learning fun while giving youth real-life experiences.
For more information about College of the Sequoias' YESS Program, please contact Linda Paredez at (559) 737-4842 or  or Jason Ford, Advising Specialist-YESS, at (559) 730-3717 or  Jason is available Mondays,  Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 7:45 am to 12:45 pm to assist current or former foster youth with navigating the college system, and /or helping to connect these youth with needed resources.  New for FY 2013/14 is our Club YESS, which is an on-campus club for current and former foster youth, as well as other students, with a focus on providing awareness of issues that foster youth face, and working to provide an opportunity for students of College of the Sequoias to provide a sense of community and promote leadership skills with regard to the Foster Care system.

In addition to workshops and classes, we have resources dealing with teen issues that are available for check-out through our Lending Library for Teens.   Please note, this section of the website is under construction and will be available in the near future.

For more information about Tulare County`s Independent Living Program, call (559) 623-0357; for Kings County`s Independent Living Program services, call (559) 852-4954.

Please note that ILP is a statewide, federally-funded program.  If you do not reside in Kings or Tulare County, please contact the health & human services agency for the county in which you reside for information about what ILP services are available to you in that county.  You can also check out this on-line resource for foster youth:   It includes valuable resources, as well as provides a detailed listing of contacts for each county to help you get connected to the services you need! 



Go to Links for Current and Former Foster Youth. 

Go to Resource Lending Library for Teens - under construction.

Go to Return to Foster Care Education Home Page.

Last Updated: 10/8/2013 11:37 AM