African American Infant Program
CFA’s African American Infant Program is one of the best resources we have to offer to families longing to parent a newborn. Last year this exciting program placed African American and biracial newborns in the homes of 20 overjoyed CFA families here in Washington and Oregon. The waiting time for placement in this program is relatively short, with African American couples typically waiting just a few months after their home study is approved; Caucasian couples waiting six to nine months; and singles for about one and a half years.
This is how it works:
CFA works with you to get your home study completed; trains you in all sorts of adoption-related areas, including transracial adoption, if applicable; and guides you in completing a family profile book. We then coordinate with a network of agencies across the country, primarily in Florida, Georgia and Texas, who are working with birthmothers planning adoption. These agencies do their best to promote healthy pregnancies by offering prenatal care resources and counseling to birthmothers. When an agency begins working with a birthmother a medical history is obtained and, when possible, information from the birthfather is gathered, as well.
When a birthmother sees your family’s profile book and chooses you as the parents for her baby, you will receive a phone call from CFA. This is your chance to learn about the birthparents and decide for yourselves whether or not this is the right match for your family. If you decide to go forward, you can begin to make plans to travel to the state where the baby is born to pick up your newborn. The time you have to prepare depends on your baby’s due date. Many times you will be able to meet the birthparents. Families may stay up to two weeks in the state their baby is born in, waiting for the interstate compact clearance before traveling back home with their newest family member.
Our African American Infant Program Director, Gayle Fidanzo, is available to answer any questions you have about this program. Please email Gayle at email@example.com or give her a call at 503-232-1211.
Steps to adopting through the African American Program
The first step is to fill out an inquiry form on our website. A caseworker will contact you to follow up with your request.
You will then complete and send in an application along with the following:
- The fee of $300 listed on the application
- Two family photos (additional photos will be needed for your portfolio)
- Pre-adoption Education Certificate(s) if completed (must state hours you have completed. If certificate is not available, please give contact person and information)
- Government issued photo ID - such as copies of driver’s license or passport
- Copy of medical insurance card
Upon approval of your application, you will be sent a letter of instruction, contracts for services, and given information regarding the required Domestic Infant Training Course. You will be asked to submit the remaining application packet documents consisting of: medical forms, financial form, personal references, release of information form and a general autobiography. This information is needed by the social worker conducting your Home Study. Once the contracts, Christian Family Adoptions (CFA) fees and allfile requirements including the Transracial/Transcultural Questionnaire have been received, a CFA social worker will be assigned to conduct interviews with you and write your adoption Home Study.
Pre-adoption education is required for all adopting families. CFA offers the Domestic Infant Training Course through distance education.
- ADOPTION HOMESTUDY
You will be assigned a CFA social worker who will be your advocate, helping you prepare for your adoption. The social worker will conduct your adoption home study that includes, but is not limited to issues such as; your racial and ethnic heritage, prenatal and medical background risks, your willingness to provide letters, pictures and or visits to the birth parents through the placing agency, your understanding of transracial parenting issues (if applicable) and your understanding of the grief and loss issues in adoption. The social worker will then submit your completed Home Study and a non-identifying summary to CFA. After your study has been approved, your file will officially be transferred to the Program Director who works with agencies across the country whose birthmothers are making an adoption plan.
After your contracts are received and you have completed the Domestic Infant Training Course, you will be asked to design a “Dear Birthmother” letter and picture portfolio that will be presented to birth mothers once your adoption home study is approved. Instructions for designing this profile and a sample are included with the Domestic Infant Training Course. The Program Director is available to help you if you have any questions.
- WAITING FAMILIES SEMINARS (Informational flyer)
The Waiting Families Seminar is designed to provide additional support and education. These seminars are held on a Saturday in the spring and fall of each year. Participants may choose from a variety of workshops, including transracial parenting and dealing with racism, understanding birth parent issues, grief and loss in adoptions, and openness with birth families. The workshops also include panel presentations and the opportunity to interact with counselors and other CFA staff. Attendance either prior to or immediately after placement is a requirement of the program. Click here for an information flyer.
- FAMILY SELECTION
Family selection is usually made by the birth parents. Occasionally circumstances dictate that CFA and the placing agency select a family. When we are notified about a potential match we will contact your family and discuss details such as medical and social history, legal risks, placement and travel plans and fees. If at this point you don’t feel this is an appropriate match for you, we will wait for the next possibility.
- CHILD ARRIVAL
Parent(s) will travel to the state where the baby is born. Most adoptive placements are made two to ten days after the birth of the child. You may also have the opportunity to meet the birth parents at this time. Once a placement has been made and you have completed paperwork with the placing agency you will need to wait for interstate approval before returning home. This takes five days on average.
- POST PLACEMENT
Your social worker will make in-home post placement visits and, in most cases, will recommend that you begin finalization proceedings. Rarely do agencies require more than two post placement visits. We will coordinate with the placing agency to send the necessary legal documents to the attorney of your choice. You will initiate legal finalization after a post placement period of about 6 months.
AFRICAN AMERICAN INFANT PROGRAM FEE SCHEDULE
Oregon and Washington Residents
(Fees below are subject to change without notice; please contact CFA for current fees.)
CFA Agency Fees:
(Due prior to study)
- Application: $300
- Agency Fee: $2750
- Domestic Infant Training Course and Seminar: $250
- Adoption Home Study: $1500
- Post Placement: $700*
- = $5500
*The $700 represents two post placement visits at $350 each. Some agencies require three visits; if this is the case you will be invoiced an additional $350.
*** Caseworker’s mileage will billed to you at the current IRS standard rate per mile.
African American Infant Placement Fees:
- African American or biracial infants: $15,000 – 30,000
(Due at time of placement. These are not CFA fees and are paid directly to the placing agency.)
Extra family expenses
(Estimated. Due as needed)
- 12 color copies of profile: $50
- Lodging and meals: $750
- Airfare for two: $1600
- = $2400
** Estimated Grand Total: $22,900 - $37,900 **
CFA realizes that the time spent waiting for a child is difficult and seemingly endless. It is our desire to not only help children find loving and caring homes but also to help our families as much as possible during this exciting, joyous and sometimes anxiety filled journey. The program director is available to help you with any questions you might have – feel free to contact us. We look forward to working with you!