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Rate of Children Living in Alternative Care per 1,000

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Alternative care includes foster care (non-relative, kinship, and therapeutic homes), adoptive homes, group homes, residential treatment facilities, hospitals, independent living, and other types of care. After peaking at 567,000 in 1999, the number of children in care has continued to decrease dropping to 513,000 in 2005, with majority of these children (46 percent) in non-relative foster homes. While just over 100,000 children in care wait for adoptive homes, 52,000 children were adopted in 2005, a slight increase from 50,000 in 2003. Over the past several years, much attention has been given to the plight of the 20,000 youth in foster care who “age-out” of the system each year. These youth, who have often been in alternative care for most of their lives, are more likely to become homeless, use illegal drugs and be unemployed. However, with proper supports beginning years before they age-out, a successful transition into adulthood is possible.

Rate of Children Living in Alternative Care per 1,000

The Top 10 results for 2009 (ranked by Alt Care Per 1000)

Zip CodeAlt Care Per 1000Children in Alt CareYearPop Under 18

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Calculation: (Number of children in care x 1,000/Total estimated 2006 population under age 18).
Calculations made by Vision for Children at Risk.
† Denotes ZIP codes with a child population less than 300.
* Data Not Available.
** St. Louis City children identified as runaways use the ZIP code of the St. Louis City Children’s Division office, 63101, which explains the high rate of children in alternative care for this ZIP code.

U.S: 7.0 per 1,000
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,
Administration for Children and Families, Children's Bureau (2005)

ZIP codes with a child population of less than 300. Calculations for ZIP codes with low populations are especially subject to an otherwise acceptable margin of error in the population estimate. Please interpret data accordingly and refer to source data and raw data numbers when necessary.