Choosing an Adoption Agency to Ensure Adoptive Families are Screened

Naturally, you want to ensure that the family you choose is appropriate to adopt their child. A mother’s instinct and love for her baby need to be reassured. That is why every adoptive family goes through an extensive screening process to develop an approved family profile to share with the birthmother. The future of adopted children is the highest priority.

Cradle of Hope conducts extensive screening before a family can be added to our list of approved waiting families. The first step in the screening process is the homestudy, which is required to be legally eligible for adoption. A home study for potential adoptive families includes:

  • In-home visit and evaluation by a licensed social worker to be sure it is a safe environment
  • Collection of documents, such as financial documents, marriage licenses, birth certificates, etc.
  • Criminal and child abuse background checks at both state and national levels
  • Individual interviews with each family member to get to know them and be certain they are ready and appropriate for adoption
  • Health and psychological evaluations by licensed medical professionals

Choosing Cradle of Hope to help with the adoption process ensures no one overlooks any family issues, including past criminal activities, health problems, financial issues, and more. A lot of time and paperwork is needed to make sure that the family you choose will love and protect the child throughout their life. If the hopeful parents don’t meet the necessary criteria or complete the extensive evaluation process, they will not be approved to adopt.

Next, Cradle of Hope evaluates all of the information and documentation collected about the family.  Potential adoptive parents need to understand the seriousness of their commitment. They must demonstrate that they are prepared for the complex adoption process and responsibilities of adoptive parenting. Cradle of Hope social workers assess each family’s motivations to adopt, the health of their marriage, parenting styles, and adoption preferences and goals. If we believe the placement of the child would not be successful, we will not approve the family to continue in the adoption process.

Once a potential adoptive family has been screened and approved, Cradle of Hope helps them create a profile to share with a potential birthmother and find a good match. Cradle of Hope educates applicants about open, semi-open, or closed adoption to determine their comfort level for the extent of the relationship shared between adoptive families and birth mothers. Some birthmothers may not want any contact with the adoptive family after the child is born, while others will continue a relationship long after the placement. The adoptive family and birth mother must agree about what future contact they will have, and their agreement will be in writing and enforceable.

During the process, you should feel free to discuss any concerns about the adoption process or potential family with Cradle of Hope. If you decide the selected adoptive family is not the best fit, you can change your mind.

Choosing an adoption agency and finding the right family is an emotional process. If you’ve decided to move forward with an adoption plan, Cradle of Hope will thoroughly screen potential adoptive parents so that you feel confident about the family you choose.