National Adoption Month
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November is National Adoption Month. Each year, the Children’s Bureau leads this initiative through a partnership between Child Welfare Information Gateway and AdoptUSKids. This month is used to raise awareness about the need for safe and permanent families for children across the United States, and to highlight the stories of adoptees and their experiences.
According to the most recent federal data, there are currently more than 400,000 children in foster care in the United States. These children have all experienced loss and some form of trauma. However, in many ways, foster children are no different from children who aren’t in foster care. They are learning and growing, seeking friendships, adopting hobbies, and need the love and stability that a permanent home provides. This month is important for celebrating successful adoptions, but also to acknowledge areas of the foster care system that need improvement.
As children age while in the foster care system, the chances of them being adopted goes down. Teenagers in foster care are less likely to be adopted than younger children because of harmful assumptions associated with their age. This leads to approximately 20,000 youth aging out of the foster care system each year.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on adoption, both international and domestic. Placements decreased quite a bit and wait times for families is much longer.
However, through EVOLVE’s adoption programs, there have still been 12 adoptive placements so far in 2021. There have also been 10 youth who were adopted in foster care (3 in relative or kin homes and 7 kids in non-relative homes). In 2020, there were 23 adoptive placements and 9 youth who were adopted in foster care (8 who were in relative or kin homes and 1 through MN-Waiting).
Some children also achieved permanency through a Transfer of Permanent and Legal Physical Custody (TPLPC). In 2020 we had 5 TPLPC’s (4 youth in relative or kin homes and 1 non-relative) and in 2021 we had 13 TPLPC (all of which were in relative or kin caregiver homes).
At EVOLVE, we believe that there is no single definition for “family.” We welcome and are committed to serving all individuals and families regardless of race, religion, age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or marital status. Our staff is dedicated to guiding families through the process, supporting them in their transitions, and preparing them for life as a family.
Learn more about EVOLVE’s Adoption Programs and Services.