For people looking to adopt a child, there are generally two options available to them: Adoption of a newborn, in which an expectant mother chooses a family to raise her child, or adoption from the Child Protective Services (CPS) system.
Children in foster homes are placed in them for a variety of reasons, with the common denominator being that they are no longer in the care of their biological parents. Ideally, children placed into foster care will be taken in by their original families or close relatives, but when that isn’t possible, those children become available for adoption.
Unfortunately, either out of necessity or due to circumstances beyond their control, foster kids can often bounce from foster home to foster home as they await adoption or for a chance to return home. Foster children are usually older and are also much more aware of their situation.
They often resent it, acting out. And the longer they go without returning home or being adopted, the worse they feel. What these children really need and deserve is a loving home in which they feel wanted, loved, and safe.
If you’re interested in giving these children a more permanent home, you may want to consider fostering to adopt in Texas. We’ll break down how this process works and what you’ll need to do to become an adoptive parent below.
Adoption Through Foster Care
Most foster children in CPS enter a foster home expecting it will be a very abbreviated stay. If they aren’t a good fit, if they are adopted, or if they can return to their biological parents or close relatives, they know they will have to leave. As a result, they often bide their time and stay emotionally distant from their foster parents. In any case, when a child is placed into foster care, it isn’t usually the goal that their foster parents will end up becoming their adoptive parents.
Sometimes, people become foster parents with the purpose of growing their families. These foster-to-adopt families take in a child knowing they are a ward of the state, but with the hope that that child will come to consider their temporary foster family as their permanent, forever family.
The fact is that not every child will be a good fit for every home or every set of foster parents. But when a bond between a foster child and foster parents is able to firmly develop, the foster parents can end up adopting them when they become legally eligible for adoption.
Adoption through foster care is a comparatively rare occurrence compared to private adoption, but whenever it occurs, it is something truly beautiful.
How To Foster To Adopt in Texas
If you’re considering the foster to adopt route, keep in mind that you’re not starting from scratch, as with families pursuing private adoption of newborns. Foster kids are older and may have experienced quite a lot in their young lives. They may have unresolved trauma that you, as a foster parent and — if it works out — as an adoptive parent, will have to handle with endless patience, deep understanding, and boundless love.
The Requirements You Must Meet
The basic requirements for being licensed to foster to adopt in Texas are the same as for families pursuing private adoption, with some necessary additions. You have to be at least 21 years old in the state of Texas, financially stable, and responsible overall. Some organizations have different age requirements to foster, A World for Children requires that you be 24. If you’re married or divorced, you have to provide proof of that. Just as with private adoption, you also have to undergo a criminal background check and agree to a home study.
When seeking out a foster license, you have to limit the number of children in your home (no more than six, including your own kids), permit fire and safety inspections of your house, obtain first aid/CPR certification, and agree to a policy of nonphysical discipline.
Of the utmost importance will be the free training you must also undergo to learn about the issues affecting neglected and abused children. Your success as a foster parent, or as a foster to adopt parent and family, will often hinge on this training.
Get Dually Certified To Both Foster and Adopt
If your family intends to foster with the goal of adopting, you can speed up the process by getting dually certified in Texas for both fostering and adopting. Whether you’re a foster family given the chance to adopt, or an adoptive family willing to accept the placement of foster children who may become eligible for adoption, you’re providing those kids with the love, safety, and support they need now and in the future.
Adoption Through Foster Care With AWFC
Whenever and however a child can leave the care of the CPS system and find a forever home, the children win, the families win, and the world wins. By becoming certified to foster to adopt in Texas, you can help children in need to never worry again about having a roof over their heads or loving parents who will be there for them through thick and thin. If this sounds like a path forward for you and your family, A World for Children can help guide you every step of the way.