Youth with a history of trauma are at higher risk for negative outcomes later in life and delays in developing basic life skills. Youth who also have disabilities, both visible and invisible, face additional challenges with their emerging adult development. These lived experiences can lead to a reduced “window of tolerance” for stress which impacts different aspect of their lives including healthy relationships, employment, housing stability, and substance use.
Intergenerational trauma, colonization, and trauma during and resulting from the foster care system contribute to negative outcomes in personal wellbeing for youth. The Child Welfare League of Canada’s Equitable Standards for Transitions to Adulthood for Youth in Care outlines ways in which governments can better support culture, spirituality, and mental health in order to improve outcomes in personal wellbeing for former youth in care. They state:
“Every young person should be connected to their culture and spirituality, in ways that are meaningful to them, safe, and at their own pace.”