Adoption Agency | By State

A Family for Every Child is currently licensed for Adoption in the following states, with plans to expand in the future! Don't see your state? Email us and we can help you find resources!

Oregon Adoption Agency

An Oregon Adoption Agency Since 2008!

A Family For Every Child (AFFEC), a non profit organization, began with its founder Christy Obie-Barrett, a mother of 12 children – 9 of which are adopted. Christy wanted to make a difference in the lives of more children and found a way through non profits. In January 2006, AFFEC was created to help find permanent homes for many of Oregon’s waiting children with special focus on special needs/hard to place children.

In 2008, A Family for Every Child became licensed as an adoption agency in the State of Oregon, beginning the next stage of our journey!

As an adoption agency, A Family for Every Child has developed our own systems and applications to optimize the adoption process, making it easier for everyone involved! We pride ourselves in completing home studies faster and more affordably (We only charge what it costs us!) than traditional adoption agencies. Families who choose our agency can expect transparency and collaboration throughout the home study process!

 

Guest Blog Post Guidelines

Content

  • Our blog aims to provide relevant, useful articles to current/soon-to-be foster families. As such, all articles must be related to to the subject(s) of adoption, child-care, and foster-families. Any articles deviating from these subjects will not be considered for posting.
  • Only one link to personal sites allowed within an author's bio. This link must be to a personal website or social media account. If you would like more than one link to a personal site, you must pay for a sponsored blog post.
  • In order to more easily provide accurate, authoritative content to our readers, only one link to relevant sources is allowed per two-hundred words written. These links cannot be spam nor advertisements. Upon discovery of these misleading/spam links, your post will be removed and you will no longer be allowed as a guest blogger. If you believe you have a good reason for including extra links, you may email blog@afamilyforeverychild.org with your reasoning.
  • Blog posts will grammatical errors will not be accepted.

Images

All images used in blog posts must be in the public domain. 

Tone

All blog posts should follow a professional tone that aims toward empowering and educating either soon-to-be or current foster families/children.

Authorship

[details on what types of authors we're willing to accept]

Article Length

[Guidelines specifying desired word count]

Questions?

All questions or comments should be directed to blog@afamilyforeverychild.org

Orientation and Training

A Family For Every Child Adoption Agency holds orientations & information nights on a monthly basis for families interested in starting the home study process at various locations throughout Oregon.

Orientation

If you would like to attend to learn about how we can help you with your home study, please contact adoption@afamilyforeverychild.org to RSVP, obtain the parent packet. and get directions to the meeting location. Please call 541-343-2856 to make a reservation and get directions to the orientation meeting location!

Information Nights

By registering for an upcoming meeting in your area you will receive a copy of our Parent Packet to review, a confirmed seat in the session, and a reminder phone call before the meeting. To register for one of the in person information nights, please email adoption@afamilyforeverychild.org with the date you would like to attend and the number of people in your party. Space is limited, so be sure to register now. 

Adoption Agency

Information Nights (Virtual)
Information Nights (Virtual)

Are you interested in taking your first step towards adoption?! Please join us for our adoption information night! This is where you can learn about the general process of adoption and get all of your questions answered! There are a couple options every month!
Join us on Zoom for a friendly virtual Information meeting! Please RSVP for more information!
Information Nights are 2nd Thursday of each month at 6:00pm to 7:30 pm – this is a Virtual Event

Upcoming Dates Register now Questions?
Adoption Support Group
Adoption Agency locations

A Family for Every Child has developed our own systems and applications to optimize the adoption process, making it easier for everyone involved! We pride ourselves in completing home studies faster and more affordably than traditional adoption agencies. We only charge what it costs us! Families who choose our agency can expect transparency and collaboration throughout the home study process!

A Family for Every Child is licensed in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho

Adoption Training in the Pacific Northwest

Every state requires you to receive training before becoming an adoptive parent, though the specific content and hours of these trainings will vary depending on location. The training is intended to prepare prospective parents to better understand and care for children coming out of the foster care system. An overview of issues such as general child development, the behaviors trauma may cause in children, and how to best manage behaviors and support the new member of your family, will be addressed throughout the meetings. 

Oregon Training

By District

FREE Adoption Foundations Training for Oregon Residents

This class is a three-day series and is offered to help prospective parents become better prepared to adopt or foster children with special needs. The training fulfills an Oregon DHS requirement for adopting or fostering children in state care. (This class meets the minimum requirements for Oregon “Foundations Training”). The class is open to all families pursuing foster care or the adoption of children from foster care who reside in Oregon. Space is limited, reservations required. To sign up please call 503-232-1211 or email. bhartman@christianfamilyadoptions.org .

Topics Covered Include

Foster Care vs. Adoption
Separation and Loss
Attachment
Adopting the Sexually Abused Child
Adoption/Foster Care and Effects on the Family
Child Development
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effects
Positive Behavior Management
Cultural Diversity and Honoring a Child’s Heritage
Understanding the Adoption and Foster Care Process

Washington Training

Other State Training

The Basics of Adoption

Step 1: Getting Started

You have made the decision to adopt. The next step is choosing the right agency; this choice can make a huge difference in your adoption journey. First, you will need to contact an agency licensed in your state about completing your adoption home study. Here are some questions you might consider asking to discover which agency is the best fit for you. 

A Family For Every Child serves children and families nationally and we are happy to help you in any way we can. Our goal is to ensure that you and the children who are waiting are able to find their "Forever Family". By filling out our Registration Form, you can help us to help you! We will email you urgent placement requests and newsletters, case workers can find your strengths and preferences from the information you supply in our secure database, and there is no cost or obligation!

Step 2: Initial Orientation

Initial Orientation is a meeting in which you will be given a basic understanding of:

  • The Adoption Program, policies, and procedures of the Adoption Agency
  • Who the children are: the needs and characteristics of children available for adoption through state foster care systems
  • The attachment, separation, grief and loss, abuse, neglect, or traumas that children have experienced
  • The role and responsibility of adoptive parents
  • The importance of cultural and ethnic identity to a child
  • The importance of birth parents
  • The process you will need to go through and the next steps on your journey
  • Background checks
  • The Parent Packet application process
  • The home study/assessment
  • The length of the process with approximate timelines
  • The rights and responsibilities of the adoptive family and the Adoption Agency
  • The family selection/matching process

Step 3: Adoptive Parent Training

Each state requires training to become an adoptive parent; what this training consists of varies by state.  The training sessions vary by area/location, 4 to 10 weeks, or weekend sessions.  Feel free to check out our training page to see what is available in your area. The training sessions are designed to:

  • Prepare prospective parents to better understand a child who comes out of the foster care system
  • Prepare you for adoption
  • Challenge you to grow and develop as a parent
  • Help you consider: what type of child can I successfully parent?  Am I able to parent a child who has been neglected and/or abused to some degree?

Step 4: Parent Application Process

This is where you will want to narrow down the agency that you will choose to go with to complete your home study process.  You will want to make sure that you feel comfortable with the agency that you choose.  The steps for each agency may differ in training, timelines, and when items need to be completed and returned. The application provided by agencies will often include:

  • Reference letters
  • Fingerprint/criminal history background checks on each applicant
  • Financial documents
  • Medical reports
  • Marriage and/or Divorce Decree
  • Biography/life sketch
  • Child preferences
  • What brought you to adoption

Step 5: Home Study Process

A home study is a report that is required to determine the eligibility of adoptive parents.  A home study can only be used for one adoption (sibling groups are considered one if done at the same time). Home studies are kept confidential and are only shared with professionals involved with the adoption. Fees for home studies vary from each agency.

During this step, you will meet your adoption worker, who will be responsible for writing your home study. You may click here and scroll down to view the profiles of our adoption workers. They will meet with you in your home to talk about your personal history, family relationships, what brought you to the decision of adoption, and the supports/resources available to you. They will determine if your home is safe and has sufficient space for the adopted child/children. This process will help you and the agency make the best possible decisions about whether placement of the child/children will work out and determine the characteristics of the children whom you will be most successful parenting.

Once information is gathered and interviews have taken place with the adoption worker, there may be a time of waiting. The home study/assessment will need to be written; during this step of your journey please try to be patient. While you wait for the home study process to be completed, we recommend that families do some reading, research, and connect with other adoptive parents or support groups to prepare for the next phases of the adoption process.

Step 6: Matching/Selection

During the matching/selection phase, you and the agency you have chosen will work together to find the child/children that will be the best match for your family. We have a Matching Assistance Program that operates throughout the U.S. to help families in completing this step.

We pride ourselves on having a current and reliable web listing of children waiting for their adoptive family. The matching process can be very challenging and frustrating. Many families have a difficult time finding children to submit on as well as being considered and notified by the caseworkers. We encourage families to be patient and not to lose hope. Every state differs in how they make the selection of where to place children. In some states, the caseworker of the child makes the decision; in other states, it is decided by a committee of people.

Understand who will be submitting our home study on children (you, your adoption worker, etc) and how often. In some cases, you will be given a copy of your home study to submit on children while some agencies prefer that they submit your home study. The term "submitting on a child" means to give the child's social worker your paperwork showing that you feel you are a good match. Some agencies will submit on children out of state and other agencies will only submit on children in your state. Out-of-state adoption can be more work than in-state adoption. For details, see our Heart Gallery FAQ and tutorial on the ICPC.

Step 7: Placement

Placement begins once you have been selected as the "Forever Family" for a child/children. 

  • Make sure you have the necessary information about the child/children
  • Make sure your resources are in place ahead of time
  • Talk with schools, counselors, therapist, physicians, dentist, child care, and support groups

Post placement reports are required until the adoption is finalized.  These reports may be done by your adoption worker and/or another social worker.  The number of post placement visits/reports varies depending on the state requirements.  Are you ready to start? A child is waiting for their "Forever Family"; you could be the one to make a difference!

Information Nights

A Family For Every Child Adoption Agency holds an Adoption Information Session for families interested in starting the home study process at various locations throughout Oregon. By registering for an upcoming meeting in your area you will receive a copy of our Parent Packet to review, a confirmed seat in the session, and a reminder phone call before the meeting.

To register for one of the in person information nights, please email adoption@afamilyforeverychild.org with the date you would like to attend and the number of people in your party. Space is limited, so be sure to register now!

Adoption Agency

Information Nights (Virtual)
Information Nights (Virtual)

Are you interested in taking your first step towards adoption?! Please join us for our adoption information night! This is where you can learn about the general process of adoption and get all of your questions answered! There are a couple options every month!
Join us on Zoom for a friendly virtual Information meeting! Please RSVP for more information!
Information Nights are 2nd Thursday of each month at 6:00pm to 7:30 pm – this is a Virtual Event

Upcoming Dates Register now Questions?
Adoption Support Group
Adoption Agency locations

A Family for Every Child has developed our own systems and applications to optimize the adoption process, making it easier for everyone involved! We pride ourselves in completing home studies faster and more affordably than traditional adoption agencies. We only charge what it costs us! Families who choose our agency can expect transparency and collaboration throughout the home study process!

A Family for Every Child is licensed in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho

Adopting a Teenager

Can I adopt a teen?

Though most people think about babies when they think about adoption, there are many older children and hundreds of teens who wait for a family. Most of them have been in foster care for a considerable length of time; many have faced multiple moves and great losses.

Until fairly recently, teens in foster care were rarely considered for adoption. Thankfully, that has now changed. It is now recognized that it is never too late for someone to join a family. In fact, some individuals are adopted as adults.

When these teens in foster care are no longer the responsibility of the government, they become extremely vulnerable. Amongst the kids we see on the streets, homeless, panhandling, or involved in prostitution, many grew up in foster care and have little or no family support when they leave foster care. Most teens who have been adopted thrive in their new families and say it was the best thing that ever happened to them.

Like all of us, these kids need stability, a sense of belonging, and opportunities to develop and grow. These things are all far more likely if they are part of a family.

What sort of people adopt teens?

All sorts of people. Some have never parented before; others have seen their children grow up and leave home and want to continue being parents. Parents considering teen adoption will need to be strong, resilient, and, most importantly, totally committed to making it work.

Do the teens want to be adopted?

Yes. Here are some comments from waiting teens on what not having a family feels like:

"I truly don't feel like I've ever been loved ... there's a gaping hole in me."
"I've been in and out of foster care since I was little ... I've moved so much, I don't even remember the names of half the people I have lived with."
"I've really struggled with the idea of family ... trying to explain to people that I just don't have one."
A study on adolescent adoptions by the University of South Carolina, interviewed teens who had been adopted. This is what they said:
"It's the most important thing that happened to me."
"I've got a family and found love. I have everything one hopes for. I fit in a family."
"I have a normal life now. I have a driver's license, and I drive. I have friends, and I get to go on overnights. There is no comparison to what my life is now and what it was before."
"Before I was adopted, I was the property of the state ... just being adopted feels better."
"If it weren't for my mom, I wouldn't be where I am today. In the beginning, I had given up. I really tested her, especially in school. There was no way I'd be where I am today without being adopted. The best part is the relationship I have with my mom now."

What is the process for adopting a teen?

All prospective parents must complete a homestudy and an educational component before adopting a child. The homestudy is conducted by a social worker who interviews you and your family over several weeks. The social worker is not looking for perfection. The homestudy is not a test. The social worker is interested in why you chose adoption, your knowledge about adoption, how you have dealt with life's struggles (in particular, infertility, or grief and loss issues), and how you plan to deal with adoption or cultural issues as they arise. The homestudy process can be an excellent opportunity for self-reflection, clarification, and growth. The educational component is also a legal requirement. This series of seminars or one-on-one workshops explores the challenges and issues that may arise during your life as an adoptive family.

Teens are Waiting Children Too!

Assistance for Adoptive Families

There are many resources and supports available to assist families with their decision to adopt.

Adoption Subsidy

Some of the children who are adopted through Child Welfare are considered children with “special needs.” Special needs, as defined by the Department of Children and Families includes:

  • A child who has one or more special needs as a result of a mental, emotional or physical impairment, behavioral disorder, or medical condition that has been diagnosed by a licensed professional who is qualified to make the diagnosis
  • A child who is a member of a sibling group of 2 to be adopted together and one of the children is 8 years of age or older
  • A child is a member of a sibling group of 3 or more to be adopted together
  • A child is a member of an ethnic or cultural minority of whom reasonable, but unsuccessful efforts to place the child in an adoptive home were made and documented
  • The child’s birth and/or family history places the child at risk of having special needs but, due to the child’s age, a reliable diagnosis cannot be made.

Adoption subsidies are available to parents who adopt children who have physical or mental disabilities, or severe emotional problems. In addition to those children who qualify for subsidy through the Federal Title IV-E Adoption Assistance program, state subsidies are available to offset the additional costs of caring for a child with special needs. The subsidy programs are intended to remove financial barriers to the adoption of children with special needs, but they are not intended to cover the full cost of raising a child. The amount of the subsidy cannot be greater than the amount that child would have received had the child remained in a family-based foster care setting. The benefits available through the adoption subsidy programs are determined on an individual basis and may include monthly care and maintenance payments (a daily rate), health insurance coverage.

Adoption Tax Credit

In the summer of 2001, the Federal Adoption Tax Credit was updated. The most important update was to expand benefits to children with special needs adopted from the U.S. foster care system. Originally families adopting from the foster care system could claim the adoption tax credit, provided they had qualifying expenses. Unfortunately, the IRS list of qualifying expenses was limited to the cost of the adoption process, but not the day-to-day costs of raising a child with special needs. However, beginning in tax year 2003, families adopting a child with special needs from foster care, had access to this same tax credit without needing to document expenses. Since tax year 2005, the tax credit is $10,630 and you have the current year and up to the next five years in which to use it. For families that adopted in 2002 or earlier, you can only claim the credit against expenses you paid related to the adoption process.

If you have questions on the adoption tax credit, contact the North American Council on Adoptable Children at 651-644-3036 or  adoption.assistance@nacac.org. You can also visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov or call 1-800-829-1040.

Employee Benefits

Employer adoption benefits may include reimbursement for costs, paid or unpaid time-off and other support services. For more information contact the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption at 1-877-777-4222 or info@adoptionfriendlyworkplace.org, or visit their website.

Resources