FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


Adopting a Child Through DePaul Community Resources

How old are the children who are available for adoption through DePaul Community Resources?

Children available for adoptive placement are primarily 10 years of age or older. They may have some special needs, or have brothers or sisters who need to be placed with them in an adoptive family.

What are “special needs”?

Special needs can consist of many different things. Examples include behaviors resulting from sadness or anger, such as aggression, attention problems, bed-wetting, defiance, depression, impulsiveness, low self-esteem, or a lack of trust in others. Children who have been neglected or abused may have difficulty in school, or lack social and self-care skills. A child with special needs may be older, of a minority or mixed race, or have siblings.

How much does it cost?

There is no cost for adoption services at DePaul Community Resources because all of the children DePaul works with are in the custody of a Virginia Department of Social Services (VDSS).

How can DePaul Community Resources offer adoption services for no cost?

DePaul’s Adoption program is funded by grants from the VDSS and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. These grants are focused on placing children who are in the custody of the VDSS into adoptive homes and providing support services to adoptive families.

Do I have to be rich or have a large home?

No. The kids available for adoption through the VDSS need families who will love them, and provide structure and consistency. We look for families who have a belief in adoption and the ability to commit themselves to the love and care of a child; patience and perseverance; a good sense of humor; love of children; flexibility in dealing with change, stress, and challenges; tolerance and understanding; a willingness to learn; and resourcefulness.

Is there anything in my past that might prevent me from becoming an adoptive parent?

A felony conviction would be a barrier to adoption; however, there are some exceptions. Additionally, having an illness that would shorten your life or prevent you from parenting your child may also be a barrier to adoption. You would need to discuss your specific situation with one of our adoption specialists.

I’m afraid I couldn’t afford special therapies for a child with special needs. Can I get help paying for that?

Most kids adopted through DePaul Community Resources qualify for subsidy—a monthly financial payment that helps adoptive parents pay for special services a child may need. You can ask an adoption specialist for more information on this topic.

What do I need in order to adopt a child?

You need an approved adoption home study. After you complete the home study process, you and an adoption specialist will work together to identify a child or children who are right for your family.

What is involved in an adoption home study?

The home study process helps to prepare you to parent through adoption. Generally, it includes an orientation, training, and meetings with an adoption specialist. Through this process, you’ll work to identify the type of child you feel you can best parent.

Do I have to be married?

No. You can adopt as a single parent.

How long does it take to adopt?

The time it takes to adopt varies. The adoption home study process usually takes three to six months, depending on how quickly meetings and trainings are completed. After you have an approved adoption home study, your adoption specialist will work to match you with a child or children who are waiting for a permanent home. The length of time this takes depends on many factors.

If I’m a foster parent and want to adopt a foster child who is currently in my home, how long does it take to finalize the adoption?

It depends on how long your foster child has been in your home. If your child has been in your home for at least six months, then the adoption will be finalized in a shorter length of time than if your child is newly placed in your home.

Are there any services available after I adopt a child?

Yes, there are services available at DePaul Community Resources and in the community. Through DePaul’s Adoption grants, children and families have access to adoption-competent support services that can be provided until children reach adulthood. Ask one of our adoption specialists for more information.

How do I get started?

Call DePaul Community Resources at 888.233.7285 and make an appointment to meet with an adoption specialist to learn more.