Friday, April 29, 2016

Foster Care Adoption: 15 Steps to Adopt from Foster Care

Often people think that the process of adopting from foster care is super complicated.   It is complex for sure, but it is a doable process.  It is also a road that many, many people have walked before you.  So here is a very, very simplified overview of how to adopt from foster care.

More posts about adopting from Foster Care
  1. Think, "Hey this might be the way I/we want to build my/our family."
  2. Ask questions - of everyone, friends, family, bloggers, adoptive parents, adoptees - make sure this is the best decision for you. Adoption isn't for everyone and that's okay.
  3. Attend into sessions, more than one.
  4. Apply to an agency or county Foster to Adopt program that fits you.
  5. Do the paperwork. It's hard, it's tedious, it's repetitive. Do it anyway. The quicker you move, the quicker your social worker can do what they need to do.
  6. Visit with your social worker in their office & then in your home.
  7. Do some more paperwork & whatever the worker asks to you do.
  8. Give the worker some time, she/he has to write it, have it proofread for accuracy & compliance to the laws of the state you live and the state/county you plan to adopt from by another worker (and possibly your family), print, notarize if necessary, sign.
  9. Get approved & have an approved home-study.
  10. Decide if you want to foster to provide temporary care and be open to adoption (concurrent adoption) or only consider kids whose birth family's rights have already been terminated.
  11. In concurrent adoption, wait for your social worker to call with a referral of kiddo who needs a place to stay for the night or maybe forever.
  12. Ask more questions - get as much info about kiddo as possible.
  13. In adoption (from foster care) talk to your worker about kids and youth who need a home at that time.
  14. Ask more questions. See a theme here?
  15. Once you are matched with a child or the child you are fostering becomes available for adoption, let you worker know just how interested you are (we as workers offer aren't sure of a family's commitment until we hear the words, "We are in this 100%. We want this child to be a part of our family." The words matter!
  16. Do what your social worker tells you.
  17. Go to court & finalize the adoption.

Of course, its much more complicated than that, but those are the basic steps. It's so doable.


  1. To add to #12 - ask the social worker for recommendations for children he or she knows other SW are actively trying to recruit adopted families for. The child we were placed with was a few years older than what we preferred and we had wanted a girl more than a boy, but he couldn't have been more perfectly fitted to our family if he tried. Being open to all sorts of children brought us a child we would have never looked at otherwise, and we would have lost out big time.

  2. To add to #4, if you pick an agency they will assist you in adopting a waiting child anywhere in the US. If you foster to adopt, an agency isn’t part of a county, but is used when a county is in need; which is often.
    If you pick a county, you will only be able to be matched with a waiting child in the county they reside in. If you foster to adopt; again it will limit you to the county they reside in.


It'll be a pleasure hearing your thoughts. Alisa

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