In adoption, “special needs” refers not only to a child who is differently-abled, but also to children whose risk factors for disability, age, racial or ethnic background, or other characteristics often make them more difficult to place. These children may have language hurdles, as well as ongoing physical and psychological needs due to time spent in care settings.
Since 2014 the majority of children adopted through intercountry adoption were children with special needs. In 2020, 61% of children adopted through intercountry adoption were children with known special needs at the time of adoption.
When looking at adoption services, perspective parents need to consider what physical and emotional challenges they are prepared to handle, what financial resources they have and what resources are in their area. Our dedicated team of social workers and staff will assist you in determining if a child is a good fit for your family.
Children with special needs are often defined as "waiting children," children who are currently available for adoption services and are waiting for a family just like yours! around the world are in need of adoption. Families can start by viewing children Agape Adoptions is currently trying to place with families.
Global Down Syndrome Foundation - Find a local organization
National Down Syndrome Adoption Network
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Thomas Center for Down Syndrome
Extraordinary: Stories of Adopting Children With Down Syndrome
Mrs. Browns House: So Happy to Learn
Supporting Positive Behavior in Children and Teens with Down Syndrome: The Respond but Don't React Method
When Down Syndrome and Autism Intersect: A Guide to DS-ASD for Parents and Professionals
Agape recommends families have the files of children they are considering adopting children with special needs, and those without needs, reviewed by a medical professional specializing in adoption. Here are a few organizations who offer these resources for families:
Adoption Health Services of Western PA
Center for Adoption Medicine University of Minnesota
University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital’s Adoption Health Service (OH)
These are merely recommended resources, and prospective adoptive parent (s) are under no obligation to use these resources. A more comprehensive list can be obtained by emailing email@example.com. Agape Adoptions receives no referral compensation for any of the resources we provide to our families.
A number of organizations & foundations provide grants to families adopting and caring for children with special needs.
A few of them are:
United Healthcare Children's Foundation
The ZOE! Fund allows Agape Adoptions to offer grants for specific waiting children, many of who are children with special needs, who are on Agape Adoptions' advocacy list and for whom we provide adoption services. To learn more contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, Agape Adoptions provides a FREE Personalized Adoption Finance Coaching Service with a customized adoption finance plan for our adopting families. This Service offers webinars, training videos and consultations with a coach help you create an adoption budget, and learn about fundraising, grants and more!
The following websites are great resources for families adopting or who have adopted children with special needs.
Agape Adoption's blog, Anecdotes, has a number of stories of families who have adopted children with special needs, as well as, resources for families interested in adopting children with special needs.
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