Planning to adopt a child and live in Pennsylvania?
Welcome to our site Pennsylvania Home Studies through Adopt Abroad, Inc. We are a fully licensed and Hague accredited home study and child placing agency. We have been licensed in the State of Pennsylvania to provide home studies and child placement services since 2003. Adopt Abroad, Inc. has social workers based in Harrisburg, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and throughout the State of Pennsylvania to assist Pennsylvania based families with their adoption home study needs.
The first and perhaps most important step, in your adoption will be obtaining an adoption home study. In Pennsylvania adoption home studies can only be performed by a Pennsylvania licensed adoption agency. Pennsylvania does not permit independent social workers to provide adoption or home study services.
What is required for a Pennsylvania adoption home study? All Pennsylvania Adoption home studies will require an in home visit and interview with all members of your household. You will be required to gather various paperwork for your adoption home study; to include background information, financial information and family information. Adopting a child is a legal process, international adoptions will involve immigration issues as well and as such there is a lot of paperwork involved with the adoption home study.
Your adoption social worker will play an important role in helping you through the adoption process. Adopt Abroad has experienced adoption social workers throughout the State of Pennsylvania to help you with your adoption home study.
During the home study process our agency will be available to advise you on the paperwork required for the home study. The social worker will discuss your ideas and hopes regarding the adoption and your thoughts on parenting. Adopt Abroad will also advise you on in country changes (for international adoptions) and provide referrals to physicians who specialize in international adoption evaluations.
For families residing in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area our colleague Ms. Gail Niermann offers Faith Based Adoption Home Study and Counseling services
Since 2003 Adopt Abroad has been providing adoption home study and child placement services in the State of Pennsylvania.
WHAT IS IN A HOME STUDY
Home Study Narrative Includes:
1. Motivation to Adopt:
Includes the reasons the applicants made the decision to adopt, any infertility issues, how they have been dealt
with, what made the applicants chose international adoption, and why they have chosen the country they are adopting
2. Preparation for Adoption:
Including any pre-adoption preparation and education the family has completed, and a statement regarding the family
being prepared for the experience of international adoption.
3. Child Requested:
Includes family's preference for age range of child(ren), gender, siblings, and preferred ethnic and/or racial
background. Country will be specified and the applicant's commitment to continue the cultural heritage of the child(ren).
Social worker will include her assessment of each applicant's ability to handle potential issues such as having
little or no medical information on the child or the biological parents, consideration of possible medical problems
and/or developmental delays, and undiagnosed health problems.
4. Adoptive Applicants:
Each applicant must have specific information about his or her Family of Origin; current and past relationships
with primary extended family members; education and training, employment history; interests and hobbies; character
and personality traits, morals and values.
5. Marital History:
Current relationship and marriage date, place, etc.; assessment of the quality of the relationship; roles related
to decision making, problem solving, etc.; how they would describe the strengths and challenges of the their partners.
Single applicants: give appraisal of single status, whether they plan to marry in future and their commitment to
their adopted child after a potential marriage.
6. Children in the Home and Out of the Home:
Description of all children living in the home and out of the home. Full names, birth dates, brief description
of occupation/schooling, health, relationship quality. Include all children from previous marriages, including
adopted, biological or deceased.
7. Others in the Home:
FBI fingerprinting, police background clearances, and child abuse clearances need to be completed for all household
members over the age of 18. A brief description of others in the household.
8. Description of the Home, Neighborhood, and
Description of the house including number of rooms, size, specific rooms for children and play areas, safety and
suitability for children. For families adopting trans-racially, the attitude of the community towards children
of varying ethnic backgrounds.
9. Criminal History Check:
Pennsylvania requires that adoptive families undergo criminal and child abuse registry checks. This is done by
submitting a request provided by your adoption professional to the appropriate state or federal agency. Prospective
adoptive families are required to submit child abuse clearances and police background checks for all states that
either applicant has lived in since the applicant's 18th birthday. Adoptive families are now required to be fingerprinted
in order to do a more thorough background check.
Financial records are required to make sure adoptive families can manage their current finances and insure that
adding another family member will not be a financial hardship. Items requested include copies of tax forms, insurance
policies, bank statements, mortgage or rent payments, etc. It is essential that a home study include an assessment
of the family's ability to financially rear and educate a child.
11. Health Status:
Health examinations are typically required in order to insure the safety of the child being brought into the home
and to establish the physical condition of the adoptive parents. The goals of the health statements are to make
sure the family is in good general health, they have normal life expectancies, and they are able to physically
and mentally care for a child. If there is an existing medical condition or a history of substance abuse, the adoptive
parents are not necessarily precluded from adopting a child as long as the condition is not a threat to others
and the condition is under a doctor's care and supervision. Additional information may be required in these situations.
References are provided in order to get an overall picture of an adoptive family. Most references will include
employees, personal friends, neighbors, clergy, and family members. For the most part, references are used to assess
the adoptive family's desire and fitness to parent a child.
13. Parenting Values and Practice:
Each applicant's experience, relationships and interactions with children, expectations for the role of parenting,
child care plans.
14. Guardianship Plan:
Addresses who will care for the child(ren) in the unlikely event of the death of both parents. Includes specific
names, profession, marital status, the status of the children in their home, their health and financial situation.
Includes whether a will has been put in place.
15. Evaluation of Family:
Evaluates synopsis of the families abilities to parent the child(ren) requested.
Specifies country, preferred age, gender, age range of child(ren), acceptable medical conditions, social worker's
recommendation. Includes a statement of addressing that the above named family is approved as acceptable to adopt
internationally or domestically, in compliance with all the laws and regulations of Pennsylvania.