Today, when couples or individuals become interested in adoption, it is common for them to begin their research online.
They will find thousands of adoption-related websites, but how do they know which ones to trust? Which ones offer actual adoption services? Which ones complete adoptions from beginning to end?
The various adoption websites can be categorized into:
Adoption Professional Websites – Reach out to adoptive parents and birth parents to offer adoption services and online education
Ideal for completing most or all steps of the adoption process
Online Adoption Advertiser Websites – Facilitate matches between prospective adoptive families and birth parents
May help match with a birth mother, but doesn’t usually offer any of the other necessary services required to complete an adoption
Informational Adoption Websites – Offer free adoption information to both adoptive families and birth parents
Include government websites, non-profit websites, and ad-based websites
Great for free adoption information, if it is a reputable website
For the most part, the Internet has positively transformed the way adoptions are completed. These benefits range from online education and videos, to online communication between adoptive parents and their social worker, to online correspondence between adoptive parents and the birth parents.
However, as outlined in the Donaldson Adoption Institute’s latest study, the Internet has also negatively affected adoption through misinformation, inadequate adoption services, and even scams.
To avoid wasting any valuable time or money, it is important for adoptive parents to identify what type of adoption website they are visiting and what type of services the organization offers before working with them.
The following are found in reputable online adoption professionals:
Licenses – A licensed adoption agency or law firm is annually reviewed and regulated by a state government organization, ensuring they are in legal and ethical standing of appropriate adoption laws.
Adoption Services – An adoption professional should offer a variety of adoption services for both adoptive parents and birth parents, including matching services, legal services, counseling services, and more. If the organization only offers matching services, they are likely an online adoption advertiser and the adoption will have to be completed by another adoption professional.
Experienced, Educated Staff – An adoption professional should employ a licensed staff who have experience in social work, marriage and family therapy, or another field related to adoption. The staff should be easy to reach and able to answer all questions about adoption and their organization.
AmericanAdoptions.com is both a service site for our national adoption agency as well as a comprehensive adoption information site. If you are interested in growing your family through adoption, click the following to request free adoption information or call 1-800-ADOPTION.
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