Independent Living Services

Murray State University's Training Resource Center strives to offer independent living services to youth in out of home care and those who have aged out of the system.  These services include information about resources available to youth in care, those transitioning to independence and those who have aged out of care, opportunities for youth to network with their peers and a chance to advocate for foster youth with out of home care staff, foster/adoptive parents and community partners.

These services include three key program areas:  The Voices of the Commonwealth Youth Council, Regional KYRISE events, and the annual Youth Empowerment Conference.

Voices of the Commonwealth Youth Leadership Council (VOC)

The VOC is comprised of Kentucky foster care youth and alumni aged 16-23 and is instrumental in communicating to foster/adoptive parents, out of home care staff and community partners the issues and needs of youth in care and those who have aged out of the system. The group also advocates for change to the child welfare system to lead to more positive outcomes for youth in care. If you're interested in becoming a member of the VOC please complete the VOC application

Voices of the Commonwealth Youth Leadership Council

Joseph Jacquot

West Independent Living Coordinator

George Duvall

East Independent Living Coordinator

Dante Lynox

VOC Co-Chair


Cailey Charles-Williams

VOC Member


VOC Member

Helana Rodriguez

VOC Member


VOC Member

Regional KYRISE Events

Kentucky Resources for Independence Success and Empowerment (KYRISE) hosts educational and recreational regional events for youth in foster care aged 14-21.  Events have included swimming, bowling, skating, movies and more! Information about resources for a successful transition from care to independence is also presented and shared with youth participants by VOC members. 

All events are free to youth in foster care and their chaperones.

Upcoming KYRISE Events

  • July 28, 2023 - Jefferson KYRISE - Kentucky Kingdom

Register for a KYRISE Event 

Annual Youth Empowerment Conferences

An annual conference is hosted for youth throughout the state to provide opportunities to network with peers, attend workshops designed to prepare youth for successful independence, tour the campus and learn about college life, meet and learn more about community partners and organizations and have a great time!  Previous conferences were hosted at the University of Kentucky, Western Kentucky University, Eastern Kentucky University, Northern Kentucky University, Marriott Griffin Gate Lexington, Ramada Plaza Louisville and Four Points by Sheraton Lexington.

The Youth Empowerment Conference is free to youth and their chaperone.

The 2024 Youth Empowerment Conference is in the works.  Check back soon for updates!

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