There are all kinds of wonderful children in Stanislaus County who are waiting for a family to give them a loving nurturing home in which to grow! We are searching for homes for babies, toddlers, elementary school children, and teenagers. Many of the children that need homes are sibling groups that consist of children of different ages. We frequently search for homes that will consider taking a sibling group of sometimes up to four or five children. The children often have special medical, physical, or psychological needs stemming from their past history of abuse or neglect. The children are from all ethnicities and backgrounds. Some of these children are monolingual and bilingual.
Stanislaus County does not discriminate against age, race, persons with disabilities, sexual orientation, or religion.
We are seeking mature adults who have a stable family life, regular income, and a willingness to accept a child placed in their home as their own.
Adoptive parents should be flexible, patient, loving, caring, committed, and capable with dealing with changes in their expectations and lifestyles.
Successful families have the ability to:
- Make a commitment
- Help children rebuild self-esteem and confidence
- Communicate openly
- Work effectively with social workers and service providers
- Set realistic expectations
- Accept the concept of the biological parent
- Offer stability
- Learn new problem solving skills
- Commit to using discipline other then physical punishment
- Use community resources and support systems
- All families considering adoption must first become licensed foster parents.
The requirements for licensing consist of the prospective parents attending an orientation, a nine week training class, completing First Aid/CPR and a home evaluation. Please refer to the licensing portion of the CSA main page
After the family has completed the requirements for licensing the family is assigned an adoption worker who will assist the family in completing the necessary forms and the home study process.
Individuals seeking to adopt often face the first visit by the adoptions social worker with tender egos and mounting anxiety. We hope that this article can help calm your fears and reduce any anxiety associated with this process. Armed with accurate information you can face your home study experience with confidence and the excitement that should accompany the prospect of welcoming a child into your family.
There is a set format that the agency uses to conduct a home study. The general regulations of the State must be met, along with certain agency policies and procedures within those regulations. The adoption staff or your individual social worker is glad to answer your questions and guide you through this sometimes time consuming and/or confusing process.
A great deal of the home study is already completed by the time your adoption worker comes to your door. At the end of the licensing classes you will receive an Adoption packet that must be completed and turned into your social worker within three months of your last class. This confidential information will be reviewed and during the visits to your home, discussed by you and your worker. The social worker must interview each person or child living in the home individually and interview the family as a whole. The social worker must conduct at least three separate inteviews per state regulations. Your worker, to assist in writing the "home study" utilizes the information contained in the packet and then submits it to the adoption supervisor for review and approval. It is important to tell your worker about any part of your life that might be of concern including criminal history, financial problems, childhood problems, counseling you have received, or any psychological history, so that the social worker can discuss it with you and address any issues of concern.
The adoption packet requests information regarding your personal life, including a perspective on both your childhood and adult years, your health along with a physical from your doctor, child abuse and criminal clearances, an income statement, references, and a discussion on why you are choosing to adopt a child.
It is important to note that we are not looking for perfect people or a perfect home! The adoptions social worker will not be coming into your home to do a "white glove" inspection or to psycho-analyze you. The social worker is visiting to make sure that any children placed there will be living in a safe, comfortable, healthy home and to assess what kind of child might fit into your home. Your social worker wants to get to know you and the children involved at the same time so that he/she can try to match each others needs and strengths. We are very aware as social workers that no one is perfect and therefore we will appreciate your honesty and trust that we too are human beings, live in a home and have strengths and weaknesses.
An adoptive home study is conducted to prepare you for adoption and help you decide whether adoption is really for you. The regulations serve to protect the best interests of the child and to ensure that he/she is placed in a loving, healthy and safe environment.
When a child cannot safely remain in his or her home due to abuse or neglect, the child is removed from the home and placed into out of home care. County Social Workers arrange for services to be provided to the parent(s), to hopefully reunite the children with their families.
A "Concurrent Planning Family" is a foster family willing to provide a safe secure home for the child while reunification services are provided to the parents. At the same time, a concurrent planning family is committed to adoption the child should reunification efforts be unsuccessful. This type of placement prevents the child from experiencing numerous foster placements and promotes bonding and attachment for the child.
This is the agency's most common type of placement.
Adoptive Family Placement is for families who are not willing to take the potential risk of a child reunifying with his/her birth family, the agency has children in our system that have been freed for adoption (parental rights have been or are close to being terminated by the Juvenile Court). In this type of placement the risk of the child being removed from the placement family is low.
You must have enough monthly income to meet your own needs. Foster parents receive a monthly payment to feed clothe and meet the material needs of the children placed in their care. After an adoption is final the family is eligible to continue receiving financial support (please see AAP section for further information). The cost to adopt includes a $20.00 court finalization fee per child. In most cases, this is the only fee incurred in the process of adopting a child.
Medical and Dental coverage are provided through the Medi-Cal program until the child turns eighteen. This coverage continues even after the adoption is final!
For working parents, appropriate child care arrangements must be made at your cost. You must be able to provide transportation for the child to and from necessary appointments and visitation with the parents.
No, as long as you have safe and stable housing you are able to become licensed.
No. Parents may be married or single.
Age requirements are flexible as long as your health, energy and desire are appropriate.
All potential foster parents must:
- Be fingerprinted and undergo criminal clearance.
- Be in good health as verified by a doctor.
- Attend foster parenting classes for nine consecutive weeks.
- Have home inspected for safety, fire and health hazards.
- Agree to not discriminate against children because of race, gender, color, religion, national origin or ancestry.
- Agree not to use corporal punishment as discipline
- Keep housekeeping standards comparable to community standards.
Come and Learn more about our programs!
Orientations are held monthly at the Community Services Agency Building at 251 E. Hackett Road, Modesto, California. The orientation will be about two hours long.
Due to the sensitive nature of some materials discussed, we ask that you do not bring children to our orientations.
Please park in the rear parking lot and enter through the employee entrance. There will be a security guard present at the door to direct you.
For details please call 558-2366.
An adoptive family is different from other families in that the children that are adopted might have special needs that the family is unfamiliar coping with. Federal funding has enabled us to provide a number of services specifically focused to families that have adopted our special needs children.
At this time some of our services include:
PRESENTATIONS FROM EXPERTS
When funding permits, the agency arranges for presentations by widely known or local experts on topics that are relevent to adoptive and foster families.
Stanislaus County has teamed up with Family Connections Christians Adoptions, a local private adoption agency to provide a library of books and videos free to loan for adoptive parents and families. This wonderful resource is housed at Family Connections.
Stanislaus County has a list of counseling and other resources in the area. To get a copy of the list please contact the Adoption’s Information Line at (209) 558-2292.
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