Friday, November 6, 2015

ABCs of Adoption: F is for Finances

Dave looked at me and said "You're on F, I bet I can guess what it is."  No Dave I don't swear (at least not that often).   While yes the F-bomb is a potential topic for F, I went a different route.

Many people shy away from adoption as they are concerned about the financial aspect of it  Infant and international adoptions can  cost families over $20K.   Foster to adopt is a much less expensive route to adoption.   If you work directly with the state or county the cost can be next to nothing, if you work with a private agency the costs will be a couple thousand dollars.

When we were first referred to a private agency by the county I was hesitant as I equated private agency with big bucks and I wasn't prepared for that.   Luckily as we researched the private agency we realized that the cost weren't astronomical.   After the finalization the county reimbursed some of the expenses we incurred becoming certified as foster parents.  

The costs we incurred were:

  • First aid/CPR certification 
  • Training
  • Home Study 
  • Networking
The first three are required if going through a private agency or the county/state; the last one is what we got from going with a private agency.  Without the networking aspect, I don't feel we would have been matched with junior.  The cost was minimal for what we got in return.   

The other more controversial aspect of foster to adopt is the subsidy that foster families receive.   Hearing news stories or comments about how people only take on foster kids in order to make money makes my blood boil.   The subsidy is designed to reimburse the foster parents for childcare expenses.  But, the amount spent on food, clothing, child care, activities, etc is more than the subsidy covers.   

Post adoption we continue to receive a subsidy for junior's care.  This subsidy does not cover the out of pocket expenses for counseling or the fact that we may have to send him to a private school that can address his anxiety and PTSD.  We are grateful for the subsidy, but we will not be able to retire early as a result of this.   

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