Waiting children are also called adoptable children. These are children who are either in the United States foster care system or orphanages and foster homes overseas. Their birth parents' parental rights have been voluntarily or involuntarily terminated and the children are now waiting for a permanent housing placement.
So, who are these children and how do you find them? They are in every city, county, state and country. They're of a variety of ages, personalities, racial and ethnic backgrounds and needs. They can be adopted through a public agency, domestically, or through a private agency for international adoptions. Photographs and brief bios of these children are posted in online photo listings, in newspapers or other publications and may also be broadcast on local television stations.
Domestically, there are over 100,000 children in America classified as waiting children. The average age of a child in foster care is just under 10 years old and he or she can spend anywhere from a few months to over two years in the foster system. There are not even enough foster families for all of these children to have their own family and many foster kids are placed in group homes. Over the years, the system has tightened its procedures to expedite the adoption or reunion of a child with a family, but the waits are still long. By the time a child is adopted from the foster care system, he or she has not experienced stability or a sense of permanency for quite some time relative to his or her overall age.
Adopting from the community of waiting children is often encouraged by government subsidies that reimburse the few expenses that come with domestic older child adoption, such as the home study. It can also be negotiated that the government covers a child's medical needs. The kind of needs a child will have may already be present at the time of adoption or it may be something that develops post-placement. It was reported in the chartbook Adoption USA that adoptees are more likely than their peers to have depression, anxiety and attention deficit disorders.
These are not always a deal-breaker and many adoptive families are prepared and comfortable with a variety of health or behavioral conditions. Being honest with your emotional and financial limits are the first and most important step in ending a child's wait after recognizing the desire to love a child unconditionally.
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Response to inquiry on photo listing ...
February 28, 2014, 8:00 am
We submitted our first inquiry on a boy in our state who still has an active online profile and video. It is still active. This was the response to our inquiry and I'm wondering if this is his social worker's 'kind' way of letting us know we aren't the right family for him? I'd love some insight...
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