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Adoption: Becoming a Forever Family

Many children and youth need and want forever families -- A home where they’re always welcome, where there are people who care, to whom they feel connected. Where they belong.

When foster children cannot safely return to their birth parents, one option is for the child to be adopted by a new family.

Steps to Adoption

The path to adopting a foster child or youth starts with becoming an approved foster family (also known as a Resource Family). 

    Adoptive parents first follow the same steps as foster parents who offer temporary care for foster children, then follow some additional steps. 

    Foster-adopt parents can request caring only for children who are likely to be legally authorized for adoption. However, foster-adopt parents must be willing to care for a child who the court could reunite with the birth family or an adult the child already knows. 

    The Superior Court decides if a child can be legally adopted and only after the birth parents legally give up parental rights. It's a process that can take some time. During that process, even after a child is in the foster-adopt family's care, the child’s legal circumstances could change. 

    The Additional Steps to Adoption

    • Talk with FYC staff about talking with an adoption specialist. At the meeting, the foster-adopt parent(s) can discuss preferences about a child or youth's gender and age, the parent’s personal strengths, the family's make-up and home situation and other issues.
    • When the foster parent is ready, the adoption specialist guides her or him through the process of a legal Adoptive Placement.
    • After the Adoptive Placement is complete, the child will move to the foster parent's home.
    • FYC staff will provide supervision, services and support to help the family and child adjust to the new living situation. 
    • Final legal adoption is completed through court proceedings, which are also a time of celebration for the newly formed family.

    Contact Information

    Family, Youth and Children's Services
    Human Services Department

    In-person Lobby Hours

    Monday – Friday
    8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

    Phone Hours: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

    Child Protection Hotline 24/7:
    (707) 565-4304

    Contact us by Phone
    1202 Apollo Way
    Santa Rosa, CA 95407

    Child Protection 24/7 Hotline

    (707) 565-4304 / (800) 870-7064

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