Each year, about 700 teens age out of the Georgia foster care system — and some become homeless, victims of human trafficking, or turn to crime.

A new law, the Fostering Success Act, allows taxpayers to help prevent those outcomes through dollar-for-dollar income tax credits.

“It allows taxpayers to come in and tell the government exactly where they want their tax credit to go,” said Heidi Carr, Executive Director of the newly created nonprofit Fostering Success Act Inc.

Lawmakers unanimously determined that taxpayers could designate up to $20 million to help those aged out of the foster care system.

Carr said one teen, Aaron, 18, appeared to have a bright future. He got his GED and left foster care with tuition assistance to further his education.

“But he had nowhere to live," C arr said. "He ended up in a homeless shelter, and it was not a very good environment for him to be focused on his studies. He also didn’t have money for food, so he would end up going to food giveaways, food pantries and churches.”

Teens like Aaron face enormous hardships, according to Carr.

“81% of young men coming out of the foster care system will spend time in jail," she said. "71% of young women will be pregnant within the first year of leaving the system. 97% will wind up living in poverty.”

Georgia’s Foster Care Act helps with housing, food, transportation and medical needs through taxpayers who apply for state income tax credits.

The program must meet its $20 million goal, so the state has eliminated the cap on allowable tax credits for individuals and corporations.