Applications to participate in the SOAR for Youth Program are reviewed and accepted on a priority basis.  It is important that the applicants accepted fully participate in the complete program, not merely the summer academies.

Global Youth Application Qualifications:

Applicants must:

  • Be social welfare foster youths
  • Be in grades 6-8 (rising 7-9 graders)
  • Have demonstrated academic capability (GPA = C average or above)
  • Be adaptable to a group setting
  • Have an adult recommendation with a strong preference for a social worker or court appointed special advocate (CASA) recommendations

    First priority acceptance of applicants is for candidates that meet all of the global qualifications listed above, have submitted complete application packages by the deadline, and reside in the following counties:

    • Alameda
    • Contra Costa
    • Marin
    • Napa
    • San Francisco
    • San Mateo
    • Santa Clara
    • Solano

    Second priority is given to candidates that meet all of the global qualifications above, submitted a complete application by the deadline, and reside in northern California.

    Third priority, should space in the program permit, are others that meet all of the global applicant qualifications.

    Third priority candidates are generally only accepted if the acceptance of the youth being considered does not preclude a qualified higher-priority applicant from being admitted into the SOAR program in the same calendar year.

    SOAR for Youth works closely with Bay Area county Social Services and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) to identify candidates that will benefit and fully participate in our program. Every year, on February 14th, the recruitment process for each new cohort starts. County Social Services and CASAs are invited and encouraged to work with their qualified youths who are interested in SOAR, to apply. The agencies submit completed applications by the deadline announced in the recruitment newsletter, along with signed liability waivers, medical release, and school transcript. After participants are selected, county Social Services staff obtain the court release and photo authorization needed to support their youth’s participation. SOAR does not consider applications submitted directly by foster families.

    For Application Inquiries:

    To Apply:

    Note: SOAR does not accept applications from foster families directly. Please contact the Bay Area County Social Services Agencies and CASA chapters for assistance.

    There are two ways to submit your 2024 application:

    • Submit using Docusign at SOAR 2024 On-line Application. See below for additional instructions.
    • Download/Complete the SOAR 2024 Application Form and return the completed application via the US Postal service to P.O. Box 1291, Berkeley, CA 94701. Please do not send the mail registered as it will only slow down the process.

    Instructions for Navigating our DocuSign Application:

    • Make sure you read the information on each page before signing.  Please fill out all blank fields where you have the information
    • If you want to save your application to return to later, click “Finish Later” in the upper right hand corner to be able to complete the form at a later time
    • Once you hit “Finish”, your portion of the application will be submitted and you will no longer be able to make any edits
    • ONLY the listed Guardian will be able to input medical information. If anyone besides the Guardian has more accurate or complete information make sure to communicate this information to either the Guardian or the SOAR team with an email to
    • If you are completing the application on a mobile device, turn your device sideways to view the application as it is intended

    The person who starts the application process is known as the “Initiator”.  The initiator has additional responsibilities:

    • On the first page after clicking the DocuSign link, make sure to fill in ALL of the fields for contact information that are available. You can repeat contact information if any individual assumes multiple roles.
    • If you do not know the information for any of the roles listed, enter “Unknown” for name and use your own email as a placeholder for the unknown person’s email address. The SOAR team will update this information as it comes in.

    If you have any questions about the Application Process please reach out to