The agency you choose to help you find the child you are waiting to love will play a large and important role in your life. We encourage you to take your time with this decision.
Things to be aware of:
- Is your agency state licensed? State licensure is a basic requirement for child placing agencies.
- Is your agency an incorporated nonprofit agency? For profit adoption agencies are more likely to be driven by bottom-line thinking. Each child placed results in more revenue, which could compromise the service provided.
- How long has your agency been in existence? Newer agencies are less likely to have as much experience and expertise in the field as older, more established agencies.
- How many children has your agency placed since its founding? While the total number of children placed may not have much to do with the quality of the work, agencies that have placed at least a few children are more likely to know what they are doing.
- Does the agency have accreditation or recognition from any significant accrediting organizations? Accreditation is a good indication that an agency understands the importance of high standards of practice and works to maintain those.
- Does the agency have a list of clients who serve as references? You may wish to talk to someone who has previously used that agency.
- Can you reach your caseworker or someone who can help you anytime you have a question? Are your questions answered in a satisfactory manner?
- Do you know where the agency office is? Can you visit it?
- Are you able to see detailed fee information about the programs in which you are interested?
- How do you feel when you talk to or communicate with the workers at that agency? Everything else aside, you are going to be working closely with your adoption agency, and your sense of comfort and trust is paramount to a successful adoption.