The home study investigation process has multiple purposes:
- To prepare the prospective adoptive parents for the addition of a child(ren) to their family through adoption.
The home study social worker will discuss such things as child development, attachment, initial child transition into a family, life-long adoption matters, trans-racial and trans-cultural adoption issues, separation and loss, the impact of institutional care on a child’s medical and developmental needs, open adoption relationships with birth parents, undiagnosed conditions, limited social/medical/genetic history, etc. The social worker will also refer the family to needed adoption training, provide a listing of appropriate adoption literature, and connect the family to adoption support networks and/or other families who have adopted in the same manner as their adoption plan.
- To ensure that an adopted child would be safe and nurtured in the prospective adoptive parents’ home.
The social worker is responsible to ensure that any child placed in the family’s home for adoption will be loved and safe. The social worker will assess the prospective adoptive family’s:
- Parenting skills
- Home for safety (e.g. smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detector, secured firearms, protected pool, child-proofing) and appropriate space for a child(ren).
- History of child abuse and maltreatment
- History of criminal activity
- Financial stability
- Social, family, and educational history
- Family and social network of support for adoption and parenting
- Stability of marriage and/or partnership
- Health status
- Other risk factors
- To explore your adoption plan so the adoption agency can properly assist your family and so the home study investigation report can accurately state your adoption wishes.
The social worker will discuss with the family their plans for adoption regarding gender of child(ren), age of child(ren), ethnicity of child(ren), country of origin, and any special needs of the child(ren). This will allow the social worker to help the family choose an adoption plan that is the “right fit” for their family. This will also ensure that the home study investigation report will properly approve the family for their specific adoption plan.
- To understand the essence of who you and your family are so that the adoption agency can support your needs and the home study investigation report effectively reflects who you are.
The social worker will assess the family’s social and educational history, family structure, parenting history, availability of support networks (family, friends, and adoption support groups), and knowledge of adoption. This will help the social worker provide necessary support and education to the family. It will also ensure that the family’s home study investigation report appropriately reflects the family.
- To prepare the prospective adoptive parents for the adoption process.
The home study social worker will explore with the family the adoption process (domestic or international), the risks and unknowns inherent in adoption, expenses, potential challenges, and possible delays associated with adoption.
For domestic adoptive families, the social worker will also discuss the adoption procedures (e.g. surrender of custody, placement, adoption finalization), family profile development, outreach to birth parents, building open adoption relationships, meeting potential birth parents, matching with birth parents, hospital planning, placement, post-placement supervision, post adoption contact and on-going relationships with birth parents.
For international adoptive families, the social worker will also discuss the adoption procedures involved with international adoption including, working with an international adoption placement agency, Citizenship and Immigration Services approval, dossier development, child referral, travel to country, adoption of child, immigration into the United States, and post-adoption supervision.
Family Connections, Inc. would be pleased to provide home study services for your family. Please contact the agency at 607-756-6574 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to supporting your adoption plans.