East Ridge Residence received a different type of resident last month – a teenaged boy.
John Payne is the first to participate in a new program in Chattanooga, TN, called The Victory Lap that helps transition teenagers aging out of foster care into a new support system. They place into senior living communities people 18 to 21 years old who have aged out of foster care.
The Victory Lap says that it is trying to help these teens avoid becoming under-educated, under-employed and, in some cases, homeless.
Payne joined East Ridge Residence as its newest and youngest resident on July 12. He was met by residents wearing special t-shirts and cheering for his arrival with pom-poms.
In addition to living there, Payne will be working in the dining room. He is enrolled at Chattanooga State Community College and will begin taking classes this fall in the hopes of one day becoming a technical analyst for the FBI.
Payne says he’s most looking forward to having his own space, especially after living with 11 other boys in foster care.
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