March is National Social Work Month, and we at American Adoptions want to take this opportunity to highlight the amazing social workers we have on staff at our agency. Without them, none of what we do here would be possible.
American Adoptions is lucky to have 19 licensed social workers on staff, as well as 92 contract social workers located across the country. Our on-staff social workers include:
- 5 adoptive family specialists
- 10 birth parent specialists
- 3 social workers who serve in director positions
- 1 home study coordinator
We join the National Association of Social Workers in celebrating National Social Work Month, highlighting what wonderful work social workers do across the U.S. We certainly agree with this year’s motto: “Social Workers: Leaders. Advocates. Champions.”
Whether you’ve worked with our agency social workers before, or are still considering the adoption process, it’s always worth reminding you of all the amazing things these professionals do at our agency as they assist prospective birth mothers, adoptive families, adoptees and more.
What Do Birth Mother Social Workers Do?
Our birth mother specialists work closely with every pregnant woman who contacts our agency, whether she’s still considering adoption or knows she wants to pursue this unplanned pregnancy option. Women facing unplanned pregnancies are often at a very difficult point in their lives, and our social workers help support them through it — including helping them make the decision that’s best for them and their baby, no matter what it is.
Our birth parent specialists help these women by:
- Providing options counseling for those expectant mothers considering adoption
- Providing emotional support during a woman’s decision-making process and pregnancy, 24 hours a day and seven days a week
- Assisting a woman in choosing the perfect adoptive family for her baby
- Mediating contact between a prospective birth mother and adoptive family
- Discussing and navigating a woman’s specific birth father situation
- Helping a prospective birth mother create a hospital delivery plan
- Coordinating pictures and letters sent during open adoption communication, as well as visits and other contact
- Counseling a prospective birth mother after delivery to help her choose the best path for her
- Coordinating with financial, medical and other adoption professionals to ensure a pregnant woman receives the care and assistance she needs
- Working outside office hours to help a prospective birth mother however they can
- And more
Women who are choosing adoption for their baby go through an emotionally difficult period, which is why our birth mother specialists work so hard to provide the support and guidance they need.
What Do Adoptive Family Social Workers Do?
On the other side of the adoption process, adoptive family specialists support the hopeful families who are waiting to adopt a child through our agency. Just as prospective birth mothers struggle through complicated emotions when deciding on adoption, prospective adoptive families also have difficult periods of waiting and confusing emotions. The support a social worker provides to them during this time, therefore, is invaluable.
Here are some of the ways that our social workers support adoptive families as they work with our agency:
- Guiding families through adoption requirements
- Counseling them through remaining feelings of grief and loss related to infertility or other previous losses they have experienced
- Providing education about adoption to ensure it’s the right family-building process for them
- Assisting them through the home study process, including answering questions and gathering documents
- Finding a prospective birth mother who meets their preferences
- Mediating pre-placement contact between them and an expectant mother
- Preparing them for the hospital stay
- Counseling them in case of an adoption disruption
- Assisting with navigation of post-adoption contact, for even years after placement
- Answering questions about speaking to their adopted child as they grow up
A Big Thank You to Our Social Workers!
Adoption can be a practically and emotionally complicated process for all involved, but American Adoptions’ social workers do all they can to make it a positive and beautiful experience for both adoptive parents and prospective birth mothers.
At our agency, every month is National Social Work Month, and we appreciate all that these professionals do. Drop a comment below to make a shout-out for any American Adoptions social workers who helped you through your adoption journey!