During our visit, we will learn more about Florida’s privatized structure and use of its federal funding waiver, which have been credited for its foster care population being cut nearly in half over the last decade. Additionally we will hear from just a few of the non-profit organizations and service providers throughout South Florida that are developing unique ways to care for foster youth and help them transition into adulthood. These innovative approaches are working to ensure that more children are afforded the security of a stable home, more families are given the support they need to provide for their children, and that more of those who are placed in foster care are given the care and services needed to grow into successful adults.

Make no mistake – the work is far from over. While countless individuals and organizations are working tirelessly on behalf of Florida’s youth, foster care youth continue to lag behind their counterparts and we still hear far too many cases of children falling through the cracks. As a result of this visit, we hope to not only gain a better understanding of Florida’s child welfare system but also develop concrete steps the Federal government can take to build upon what is working and change what is not. Just one child denied the right to achieve his or her fullest potential is one too many.

Reps. Tom Marino (R-Pa.) and Karen BassKaren Ruth BassUS Senate must follow House lead in combating human trafficking Ethiopia at tipping point as Congress mulls human rights bill Technology's role in human trafficking cannot be ignored MORE (D-Calif.) are co-chairs of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth and Reps. Alcee L. Hastings (D-Fla.) and Federica Wilson (D-Fla.) are members of the caucus.