LIFE: Living Independently & Finding Empowerment

“LIFE Skills came into my life when I was 18. I was a homeless youth who had just aged out of foster care. LIFE Skills helped me with my life goals - getting into school, helping me with budgeting, and motivating me to believe in myself. ”



Our Approach

The transition to adulthood can be a challenging experience for anyone, regardless of personal background, socioeconomic status, gender, identity or race. It is certainly more challenging for youth who do not have the economic, familial or social supports that can assist them to overcome the many challenges on their journey to self-sufficiency and independence.  LIFE Skills Foundation aims to provide a safety net and support network for transition age youth in Durham, NC, that do not have "someone" to turn to for help.

Central to LIFE Skills’ approach is the idea that each transition age youth we work with has the fundamental right to a life of happiness, full of possibility and free from oppression. 

LIFE Skills is based on the philosophy that programming tailored to the individual is more effective than programming tailored to an idea or funding stream. LIFE Skills provides assistance in the following domains:

  • Housing

  • Employment

  • Education

  • Health and Wellness

  • Financial Literacy

  • Communication and Building a Support Network

We recognize that systemic forces of racism, oppression and economic disenfranchisement create a reality that can be extremely challenging for our participants. However, we also hope to provide the opportunity for our participants to obtain the skills necessary to overcome these systemic influences.

LIFE Skills recognizes that our participants have their own strengths and challenges, their own likes and dislikes, and their own thoughts and opinions about how to best move forward. LIFE Skills takes great pride in creating individualized programming that allows for our participants to have true input.

LIFE Skills recognizes that we must work diligently with our partners in the community to provide the support that transition age youth need to be successful in their employment, their educational program or in their housing.

Learn how our partnerships have grown: 2018 Annual Report

Changing Lives

What is LIFE Skills? Hear staff, clients and community members explain the specific needs of youth facing a challenging transition to adulthood and what LIFE Skills is doing to help them succeed.

LIFE Skills participant Aqura Royster explains what brought her to LIFE Skills and how the program has helped her attain her goals.

Organizational Milestones


Of young adults who age out of foster care, 1 in 5 will become homeless and 1 in 4 will become incarcerated.

Ready to help?