Adoption is a life-changing decision that brings joy and fulfillment to families across Tennessee. According to Nashville Scene, there were 3,306 adoptions in the state in 2020.
Whether you hope to provide a home for a child in need or expand your family, understanding the adoption process is the first step on this journey.
The home study is the first major step in the adoption process. A home study involves a series of interviews and home visits by a licensed social worker. They will assess your suitability to become an adoptive parent and prepare you for adoption. During this process, they will review your personal background, your financial stability and your physical and emotional health. They will also ensure that your home is safe for a child.
Matching and placement
After completing the home study, the next step is matching and placement. This involves finding a child whose needs you can meet and who fits well with your family. You can work with an adoption agency to identify potential matches. Once you find a match, the child will come to your home. This placement can be on a trial basis at first, allowing everyone involved to see if it is a good fit.
After placement, there will be a series of post-placement visits. A social worker visits to ensure that the child is adjusting well to their new home and that you are coping with the changes. They will provide support and guidance to help you and the child navigate this transitional period.
Once the post-placement period has ended, you can finalize the adoption. This means you legally become the child’s parent. You will receive an adoption decree from the court, and the child will receive a new birth certificate listing you as their parent.
While the process may be long and sometimes challenging, the reward of having a child to call your own is priceless.