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The purpose of this project was to connect with a non-profit organization to
help target opportunities they could seek out to grow their company. Primary Needs is an extension of the non-profit organization iFoster which helps children growing up in foster care. One need of the many needs in the community was a way to combine an abundant amount of information and resources for teens aging out of the foster care system. Primary Needs provides teens a way to feel supported during their transition to adulthood.
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1 in 5 foster teens experience homeless after the age of eighteen
How does Primary Needs create impact?
Overall the major goal of the project was to create an inviting environment for teens who aged out of the foster care system to go to when they are in need of help or support. Providing young foster adults with useful resources allows them focus on more important goals such as finishing school, finding a career, or discovering
Furthermore, eight billion dollars is added to the annual cost of society in the United States for each group of kids aging out of the system. Rather than spend money to reverse negative results of not giving foster teens a fair chance at creating a successful adulthood, funding could go towards programs and organizations such as iFoster that are providing tools and resources for those in need.
The initial research of uncovering areas iFoster could expand their organization were mainly interviews with previous foster teens and iFoster volunteers. The qualitative data revealed what areas of the organization needed attention.
Interviews with foster teens names changed to
protect interviewees' identity*
"I'm so grateful and blessed that people have shown me not everyone is bad."
Hana was in a total of ten homes before she aged out of the foster care system. Five out of those homes she was abused. She has dealt with mental illness, and being angry with humanity. With help she has been able to finish her GED.
"I think when I overdosed I knew something had to change in my life for the better."
Hailey experiences mental and physical damage from her biological parents's physical abuse. She was adopted at the age of 11 but then given up at 13. All 11 homes she lived in she experienced abuse until she aged out of the system. She dealt with homelessness, overdosing, and would have to sleep with men for a place to sleep at night.
"I've been through a lot but I'm working hard to provide my daughter a better childhood than I had."
Zoe was in a total of five different homes before she aged out of the foster care system. Three out of the five homes she experienced abuse. When she aged out out she would sleep with men just for a place to sleep. She has been homeless and tried to overdose multiple times, and became
pregnant at the age of nineteen.
"My experiences from my biological father and homes has left me very angry, but I'm working on forgiving myself for my emotions."
Jerry lived in a total of 6 homes before he aged out of the foster care system. He had two sisters he was separated from at the age of 7. He experienced abuse from all 6 homes he lived in including a group homes. He has dealt with homelessness and anger issues as a result of the abuse.
interviews with iFoster volunteers*
"Kids need stability
in order to become
Rebecca is a volunteer
mentor at iFoster, and
works with all ages of children in the foster care system. She is a firm believer that kids deserve equal access to tools in order to be successful in whatever they choose to do. Rebecca states these kids truly have been dealt the wrong cards.
"I used to be in their shoes and relate to their needs."
David is a volunteer mentor at iFoster, and donates his time since he used to be in the foster care system. He said the app would have helped him a lot
when he was aging out. Finding resources
to help when you are already struggling can
be very difficult for a
"Mental health is an
essential aspect of
and adult life."
Juan is foster parent
and offers his time to
iFoster to help other
children in need. He has a background in psychology, and uses his skills to identify individual children's mental health needs. He thinks the mood journal would be a helpful tool to track their overall mood.
"Everyone has some
thing very special
Jane is a certified life
coach who helps people
reach their full potential.
She uses her skills to help foster teens identify their personal strengths in order to collaborate what plans kids can have after the age out of the system. Primary Needs would be a great way to help teens out.
"Education is a
great way for us
to better the future."
William is also a
young adult who
offers his time to
help fellow young
adults with college
applications. He is
a four year university,
and knows the best
way to present your-
self to be admitted
What does this highlight?
There are primary needs that every individual finds essential to their daily life a home, food, healthcare, transportation, and etc. The largest take away from the user interviews was the issue of resources teens have access, but were not aware due to the information being buried.
What do young adults need
to be successful?
primary needs is here to help foster kids age into adulthood with the proper tools in order to be successful adults.
How it works
Primary needs works as a route to connect foster teens with volunteers, resources, and organizations with the ability to provide them with essential human needs. Additionally the app works as a way to track their overall mood throughout the week in the form of a mood journal. Foster teens are able to connect with each other on the app and would be able to communicate through messaging or meet others in person at scheduled events in the app. Primary needs aims to create a community for foster teens in order for them to feel supported in a new stage of life.
When teens login onto the app they are directed towards multiple different menus to access areas of the app most useful to their personal needs. The flexibility of the app is intended to allow foster teens to make their own decisions about what resources they would like to take advantage of in the app.
a reliable, accessible, and fun resource for young foster adults to create new opportunities.
Typography & Color
Color choices were made to be bright and inviting for users. The app needed to follow current trends in pop-culture such as the use of emojicons and vibrant colors in order for the younger age group to interact and download the primary needs app.
The shapes in the app were rounded to make the appearance of the app more friendly for users. The typographic choices are typical for wayfinding symbolizing our purpose of guiding young adults into a successful adult life.
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