About Me

I am the mother to 6 children and former foster mother to 2. I am passionate about whatever it is I am passionate about, until I change my mind. I dream big, plan big, and once in a while I even make it big. We are planning to take our freak show on the road. Join us as we embark on a new adventure!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

ADOPTION UPDATE (not really)

Here is the email exchange I have had with the Adoption Worker today:

adoption interest and fire inspection

Dear Gary and Kerry,

I hope you are enjoying the summer.

I understand that you cancelled a fire inspection quite a while ago. In order to maintain approval as an adoption provider, you need to have a fire inspection and I need to meet with you to update your adoption home study.

Please let me know if you want to schedule these or if you want to let your approval expire.


Hi "Adoption Resource Specialist",
We did not cancel the fire inspection. The Fire Marshal came to our home a while back. We had a new furnace installed, and he wanted to me contact the company to have them write a letter with their license number on it. I wasn't aware that we needed the fire inspection for the adoption piece, and I just don't want to incur any more expense in this never ending quest.
Also, I thought that you had updated our study when you came out in October?
Is there a possibility of us adopting? Because honestly, we have been ready and willing for three years and we are no closer today than we were when we originally contacted "State Agency" almost 4 years ago.
Kerry


It showed up on the fire marshal’s report as cancelled. It is a computer system so they probably have limited choices on what to choose. I would need to make another referral to the fire marshal. I do not know what expenses might be required with a new fire inspection.

You are right, I did come with "Foster Care Licensing Worker" last year, so I could probably use that, but I would still need a renewal application.

Of course, it is possible for you to adopt. However, there are many other people who are also frustrated that they have not adopted. Most of the children that we have available are older and have high needs. If you are asking if your difficult relationship with your past caseworker(s) might affect your chances, I can’t answer that. Each adoption caseworker has different criteria they look at for families for different children.

No, I wasn't asking about the difficult caseworker.
We have been interested in older child and sibling group adoption for almost 4 years. Not once in that time have we ever been contacted regarding an available child. Out of the hundreds of inquiries that we have made, perhaps 10% of our calls have been returned, and I would say that is a generous estimate. If I make another application, jump through more Fire Marshal hoops, what would be different?
I'm curious why other families are frustrated with the adoption process?
Is there some resource that we are missing? We made phone calls, attended the Meet and Greet gatherings, and even tried the foster care route, ending in heartbreak as you know. What more could we do?

Kerry

I’m sorry that you are frustrated. I am not sure what would be different. Yes, many others have been frustrated as well. For the younger children there may be 25-50 + home studies and the caseworker and supervisor pick one . Sometimes after reading the home studies they narrow it down to 2-3 and call the families to get more info about them . Part of the frustration is because we are not an adoption agency. Our goal is not to find children for you (although it is nice when that happens) but to find parents for our children needing placements. We are open about that from the beginning, but are sorry that there are so many who get disappointed.

I’m not sure what to do about people who return your call. Call again? Call their supervisor?? Families for Me and Adoptuskids.org are the normal channels that we recommend. There are other adoption agencies that you can find on the internet.

"Adoption Resource Specialist".

I understand what you are saying. I do. Families for kids, not kids for families. However when I hear over and over again how many kids are waiting and need homes, and I continue to see the same faces still needing homes, and here we sit (along with many others) willing to be that family, it seems there is a broken link. What is the process for finding families?
I am a member of Adoptuskids.org and frequently check AFamilyforME.org as well (I assume that is what you mean when you suggest Families for me).
We are not interested in private infant adoption. We would like to be the resource for an older child who needs a family. Why are there so many waiting children if there are 25-50 homestudies per child?!?!
I am willing to do the legwork, to be an advocate for my family, but I honestly don't know what more to do. Spending more time and money to update a study to do four more years of waiting seems rather silly if there is no real chance of our family growing through adoption.
What do you recommend? How can you help us be matched with a waiting child?

Kerry

I will forward your email to the adoption supervisors. They , along with their caseworkers make the decisions for the children out of this office. I am not directly involved in the selection.


For the past FOUR years we have been talking to the wrong people?!?!? So much for the title of Adoption Resources and Placement Specialist!

What I find interesting is that I made a similar complaint to the licensing worker years ago that resulted in a call from someone the next day asking if we could take a placement. Hmmm...maybe the squeaky wheel does get the grease! Will we get a call tomorrow? Stay tuned.

3 comments:

Tudu said...

My fingers are crossed!

Jerry said...

Anything, yet?

AnnMarie said...

I just came here from Yondalla's blog so just started reading. I just wanted to suggest looking at private agencies anyway--there are some who work with older special needs kids. For instance, there's a private agency in my state (with an office in my city) that ONLY contracts with the state for foster and adoptive services for kids in a particular county. I've also heard stories about agencies that are most known for private infant that also help with adopting from foster care. These places probably have higher adoption costs, however.