The Raw Numbers

  • There were 903,089 substantiated cases of child abuse or neglect in 2001 in the United States.
  • The number of children in the foster care system on September 30, 2001 was 542,000.
  • Of those, approximately 50,000 were adopted out of the foster care system.
  • There were still 126,000 children waiting to be adopted at that time. Returning home is not an option for these children and youth.

Mental Health

  • The US Department of Health & Human Services estimates that 75-80% of children who need mental health services do not receive them.
  • More than 80% of children in foster care have developmental, emotional, or behavioral problems.
  • Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death among teens and young adults.
  • In the year 2000, 3,994 youth aged 15-24 committed suicide. That’s one every 2 hours.

Other Statistics

  • In 2003, families with children accounted for 40% of the overall homeless population in 25 major US cities.
  • In 2001, the US Department of Health and Human Services estimated that 47% of the homeless population in the US had aged out of the fostere care system.
  • In 2001, 13% of Americans ages 18-24 did not get a high school diploma or pass an equivalency test
  • An estimated 57% of children in 2001 were reunited with thier parents or principal caretaker after an average stay of 12 months in foster care.
  • The average stay for all children in foster care in 2001 was 33 months.
  • The 8 states with the most foster children in care (2001) are as follows:

Ranking

State

# of Children

% of US Foster Children

1
California
107,168
20%
2
New York
43,365
8%
3
Florida
32,477
6%
4
Illinois
28,460
5%
5
Ohio
21,584
4%
6
Pennsylanvia
21,237
4%
7
Michigan
20,896
4%
8
Texas
19,739
4%
Totals
294,926
55%

*All statistics were taken from CWLA, PEW, and AFCARS reports.Download this document in PDF format.