What parents are saying about foster care adoptions

Child Trends, with support from the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, hosted a webinar to examine key findings from the 2007 National Survey of Adoptive Parents (NSAP).  This survey was the first-ever to provide information about the well-being of adopted children and their families.  While the survey included on all types of the adoption, Child Trends’ webinar focused on foster care adoptions.

Some key findings include:

  • Nearly half of the children adopted in the U.S. are adopted by a relative and/or someone they knew prior to the adoption.
  • Among children adopted from foster care who have birth siblings, two out of five were adopted with one or more birth sibling.
  • Nearly half of all children adopted from foster care live in low-income households, a much higher percentage than any other form of adoption.
  • Cost of adoption was an important factor in choosing to adopt from foster care.
  • Majority of adopted children fare well on social/emotional indicators, but some problems markedly higher among those adopted from foster care.

Kathleen Strottman, CCAI’s Executive Director, spoke about how these findings will impact federal policy.  The number of children adopted out of foster care each year has improved only slightly over the past several years, therefore, it is necessary to use the data from this survey and information from the practice field in order to pass legislation that will promote foster care adoption.  Strottman pointed out that this study is important in identifying the motivation and needs of adoptive parents in order to address these areas.  For example, the cost of the adoption and the adoption subsidy was a significant determining factor for many adoptive parents.  Knowing this, advocates need to inform policymakers about the importance of the adoption subsidy in an effort to further promote adoption.

To view the full webinar, click here.

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The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to raising awareness about the millions of children around the world in need of permanent, safe, and loving homes and to eliminating the barriers that hinder these children from realizing their basic right of a family.

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