If you’re seeking an adoption plan for a child, you’ll likely be seeking an adoption center or adoption agency to help you with this decision and to assist you in the process. You could also be seeking an adoption center near you for other reasons, but regardless of the reason, this article will help you find those centers to assist you in your adoption journey, no matter who you are.
An adoption center can be one of many things. Adoption centers can be agencies that help match birth families with those who can adopt their children. They can be resources for those who are adopting. They can also be places where individuals who are seeking counseling and information meet with social workers. Adoption centers are special places and incredible resources to their communities.
Reasons to Find Adoption Centers Near Me
You’re a Birth Parent Seeking to Learn More about Making an Adoption Plan
If you or your partner are pregnant and you want to learn more about your options, this is a great time to find an adoption center or agency near you. One misconception is that making an appointment to speak with someone at an agency or adoption center indicates that this is the route you’re going to go down. Interviewing the agency is not a commitment to do anything. It is just a way to get more information about adoption resources that may be available to you should you decide to parent, and to meet with social workers and counselors to assist you in anything that may arise during pregnancy. If you’re considering adoption at all, this is a great place to start as you begin to weigh your options and what might work best for you, your family, and your child. This is also a great opportunity to get connected with a social worker or counselor who can be an advocate for you during your pregnancy.
This is a great article about choosing a family to adopt your child should you go that route.
You Are Seeking More Information and Support to Adopt a Child
If you’ve decided to adopt a child, first of all, you’ve come to the right place by reading articles here. Though many people opt to speak directly to a lawyer, an agency in your community is a good first stop because they have the information needed to know what steps you need to take, how to utilize their services should you do so, the costs associated with adoption, and other things you might need from them (like a home study), etc. You’ll need to do your research depending on if you plan to adopt domestically, internationally, etc.
You Are Seeking Parenting Support
If you haven’t made a definitive adoption plan and are seeking additional information about parenting support, an adoption agency is a wise place to start. Many adoption centers and adoption agencies offer support groups and resources for those who are parenting. St. Elizabeth Coleman in Indianapolis, IN is an adoption agency that also offers support and resources to parents. I love reading about their parent support group. In meeting with birth parents while we were adopting, my eyes were opened to the adoption process. Some people are considering making an adoption plan for their child because of financial reasons or even because they think they can’t do it when really they could just need support to get over their hurdles. I love adoption agencies and centers that support parents. Parenting isn’t easy, and having local places that offer support is truly amazing.
Once you have found an adoption agency or center near you that you’re interested in, make sure to ask or check their website for parenting services (if this is the kind of support you’re looking for). If they don’t offer resources like that, they likely know who can help you.
You are looking for more information about these topics:
Reunification: If you are a birth parent or an adult adoptee who is considering reunification, an adoption agency or adoption center can help lead you to information about that. Many people are leaning heavily on support from DNA tests like Ancestry.com to find their birth families, but if people you are biologically related to haven’t also completed one of these DNA tests, you’re likely to reach a dead-end rather quickly. Even if you aren’t sure an agency was the agency your birth family or adoptive family used, it’s a good first point of contact as you seek to be reunited with your biological family.
If you do know which adoption center or agency was used and they’re still open, they will likely have the records you need to help you on your reunification journey. Reunification is also defined as children in foster care returning to their families. This is something an adoption center might deal with as well, but not always. If you’re specifically searching to find biological family members you know you have, make sure this is something that agency handles.
In speaking with those who have been looking for birth family members, they all say to be patient and open-minded. It can be difficult and take time to locate people and documents, depending on when the adoption took place, what laws have changed, when records changed hands, and if the agencies closed.
Read more about reunification here.
Contacts to Help with an Adoption: You might be working with a lawyer but still need counseling about adoption or advice from a social worker. Again, you should consider an adoption agency or center as your first point of contact since you can find the resources you need rather more easily. If they don’t have the information you’re seeking, they will likely know who else can help.
Home Study Guidance and Support: If you are adopting, you need a home study. Even if you’re not adopting through an adoption agency or adoption center, chances are, you’ll still need to use one for a home study. Though this isn’t always the case, typically, this is your best bet to finding a licensed social worker who can complete this correctly depending on the location you plan to adopt from and local regulations. In fact, I know quite a few people who used the same agency we did for their home study despite using an adoption lawyer for their actual adoption. Make sure to read up on what you’ll need to provide for a home study, and peruse the website of the adoption agency before you call or make an appointment.
Read about my home study experience here.
Counseling: If you are a birth parent, adoptive parent, or adult adoptee who is seeking counseling in relation to your adoption, this is another way an adoption agency and adoption center can be of service to you. If they don’t have counselors available on site (though many do), then they can likely direct you to a counselor or therapist in your community who will be most helpful based on the needs that will be helpful to you.
How Do I Find Adoption Centers Near Me?
Though you may think there aren’t any adoption centers or agencies near you, that may not be true. Google can help you find a center, and so can this directory from adoption.com. However, there are many other ways to find an adoption center or agency near you.
Ask a Medical Professional
If you’ve learned you’re pregnant and you’re looking for an adoption agency or center to help you make an educated decision about what to do, a great first contact is your doctor. In fact, when you’re at your OB appointment, there may be literature in the lobby about local agencies, if you aren’t comfortable having that conversation with your doctor. However, your doctor is a great resource to you, so I would highly recommend sharing with him or her that this is something you are considering and asking for agency and center recommendations.
Do a Social Media Search
Though social media isn’t always the best way to go, you may find some useful information on it. I know when we started considering adoption to build our family, not only did we not know where to begin, we didn’t realize how many people in our social circle were either on the same journey or had knowledge about the local adoption community. A quick ask on Facebook gave me multiple local agencies, names of lawyers, and I even reconnected with some old friends who had adopted their children and ended up being a wealth of knowledge that I didn’t even know I needed yet. You can also do a search on Facebook for agencies near you as many adoption agencies and centers have Facebook pages.
Speak to Someone You Trust
If you are seeking to make an adoption plan or looking into adopting a child, I would suggest that you speak with a professional who you trust in your community. Whether it be a doctor, a social worker, a lawyer, or your closest friend, share with this person what you’re going through. If they don’t know of a local adoption agency or center, they might know someone who does. But more importantly, you have shared something that is of importance to you with someone who can walk with you as you seek an agency and make decisions.
Look into Pregnancy Centers in Your Community
Many communities have pregnancy centers (sometimes called pregnancy crisis centers). Call or visit these locations; they may have some of the services you need and want, and they can likely connect you to a local adoption agency, adoption center, medical professional, social worker, lawyer, other resources based on your needs. If you’re struggling to find one of these centers, your doctor can probably again be of assistance in this area, or there may be literature about these centers at medical facilities (like hospitals) in your area.
For more information about pregnancy centers, read this article.
If you still need help in finding adoption centers or agencies, this is a great resource.
When I Find Adoption Centers Near Me, What Services Can I Expect?
Every adoption agency and adoption center will have different services based on its mission and location. If you are pregnant, chances are most centers and agencies will be able to support you. Adoptive parents, note that these are generally places designed to help birth parents, but adoption agencies would specifically have information you might need if you’re planning to adopt. Every adoption center and adoption agency I’ve come across not only lists their services on their website (and often social media page) but also has a directory of the individuals you should reach out to, depending on what you need. Many adoption agencies and centers provide:
- Adoption facilitation
- Parent support groups
- Parenting resources
- Counseling for birth parents and/or adoptees
- Home studies and home study support
- Education opportunities
- Connections to other local resources
- Reunification resources
How Can I Support Adoption Centers Near Me?
There’s a chance you aren’t sure about adoption or making an adoption plan, but you might still be interested in adoption and want to support those who are involved in the adoption process somehow.
Most adoption centers or adoption agencies are not for profit and definitely need support! Consider donating financially, buying items off of their Amazon Wishlists, etc. You can call to ask about their needs. Due to our own history with adoption and local agencies, my daughter and I send packages to help families who have just adopted or who are parenting and need items.
Both my daughter and I want to give back. From our relationships with birth parents, adoptive parents, and adult adoptees, we find that giving helps celebrate adoption, supports parents, and enables us to still feel connected to the people who helped us become a family, to whom we are forever indebted.