Choosing an adoption agency: Mom-to-mom advice

I am going through my church.... I was looking for an agency that had open adoption. The birth parent has the right to be a part of the baby's life -- and if she chooses to, I want to make sure she has the opportunity.

I also wanted an agency that had counseling for anyone involved. The whole adoption process can, and will be, stressful. I want to make sure that if counseling is needed, it is right at our fingertips. --Jenna B.

I have adopted four beautiful kids. Three of them were newborns. Their adoption fees were covered, and they receive medical benefits until they are 18.

My advice would be to check out state adoptions. There are many kids in need of a family right here in the U.S.

Three of ours had been abandoned at birth, one on a street corner. These kids need help.

Try foster care as an entry to adoption. We didn't have money to adopt, just a deep desire. Now I am a mom of six. --Linda D.

Make sure the agency is made up of people that you can connect with. Do they answer your calls within a few hours? This was really important when I first started but even more when I started to obsess about arrival.

Can you access the agency via email? I liked that I could contact people via email. I didn't feel like I was interrupting someone else's placement, and I got to ask my questions of specific staff people.

Does the agency have similar goals and objectives to your own? I liked that our agency puts its emphasis on caring for kids. The goal is finding homes for children, not children for parents. While my goal was finding a child, I wanted to work with someone who was not feeding into my self-serving motivation.

The agency should have a long-term commitment to the child and your family. Do they offer cultural experiences for the kids? Do they give support when the child arrives and there are attachment and bonding issues? Are there family gatherings so the children can see other adopted children?

Are the agency's religious beliefs similar to yours? I like that ours is a Christian. Others may be turned off by it. Read all the materials to see if the language the agency uses in reference to religious beliefs is something you can live with.--bsmith5500

Unofficial Choosing an Agency
Choosing an Adoption Agency
Agency Checklist

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