"Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life."
- Mark Twain
Matching an adoptive child with a potential family isn't easy, but it helps assure an adoption relationship stays strong for a lifetime. Factors to consider, for both the child and adoptive family, include the child's age, gender, health, history, ethnicity and special needs, as well as how the child fits with a family's interests, activities and beliefs which is where the Children's Bureau comes in.
Children's Bureau, one of the largest adoption agencies in California has developed a "matching team" approach for placing adoptive children with families. Last year, the organization placed more than 130 children in loving, adoptive homes.
"Children's Bureau professional staff reviews each child's case and matches that child's needs with a family's experience and/or ability. For example, a child who has special needs (such as an infant born with drugs in his body) might be placed with a family prepared to handle that child's range of emotional and physical demands," said Cynthia Elliott, one of Children's Bureau's matching team social workers.
Children and prospective adoptive parents get to know each other gradually, meeting at least two to three times before deciding to pursue adoption. "This process works wonderfully for the children and families. It allows everyone the time to get to know each other to ensure that this is the best match for them," said Elliott.
Scott and Maria Wagner from Palmdale, California had just that experience. Both had children from previous marriages and had two children together. Maria, a kindergarten teacher, was asked if she would be interested in adopting two African-American siblings (ages two and three-and-a-half at the time). With a bi-racial daughter already, Maria and Scott took the boys, discovering how easily they fit with their family and lifestyle.
Maria and Scott officially adopted the boys a year later at a special Adoption Day event held at the Edmund D. Edelman's Children's Court in Monterey Park. It was a very joyous occasion for the entire Wagner family.
Children's Bureau needs prospective parents for its adoption program. The agency provides comprehensive training, intensive services, support groups and resources to make the adoption process a wonderful experience for everyone.
If you are considering adoption, information meetings are held each month at several locations throughout Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. For more information, please call toll free at (800) 730-3933 or visit Children's Bureau's Web site at www.all4kids.org.