Foster care



Advocating adoption - maybe?

Focus on Adoption magazine

New York adoption agency says, "Slow down!" Speed is the enemy of successful adoptions.

According to Maris Blechner, in making a successful adoption placement, the age, race, or health of a child makes little difference. Neither do the marital and financial status, the location, or the parenting experience of the prospective parents. What matters most is the parent’s ability to claim a child, and a long, careful, transition.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #18

Focus on Adoption magazine

In the eighteenth of our series, we present the, until now, secret thoughts of an adoptive mom of three kids--Emily and her new siblings, Grant and Lynn. This time, mom celebrates the imminent finalization of the children’s adoption, and gains some valuable information.

I can’t believe it! The social worker just phoned and said she is preparing the court package to finalize our adoptions! It feels like we’ve been waiting forever. After the last visit, I wasn’t sure it would ever happen.

What's your family fit?

Focus on Adoption magazine

Take this quiz, developed by Speak-Out Youth members April and Courtney, to see what kind of family is the right fit for you!

Question 1

You’ve just come from a long day at school. What would you like to come home to?

a) Lots of brothers and sisters jumping off the walls and inviting you to play.
b) Your mom and dad waiting for you, ready to go on a bike ride.
c) Your mom, cooking dinner, ready to hear all about your day.
d) An after-school snack of homemade cookies while you do your homework with your siblings and wait for your dad to come home.

Planning permanency WITH youth

Speak-Out Youth Newsletter

I'm a youth who was in foster care. I know what it's like to meet with social workers and have conversations about my future. I think that planning permanency and adoption is a good thing because it gives youth a sense of stability and belonging. Permanency is important because it sets the ground work for the youth's future; it sets up a permanent family life and also might help to make sure that positive outcomes are possible for the youth in the long run. Here are some suggestions I have for people who work with youth in care or adoptees!

Fiction vs facts about youth in care

Speak-Out Youth Newsletter


  • They are unwanted
  • They are sexually promiscuous
  • They are too old to be adopted
  • They do not know how to love and interact with others
  • All foster parents treat their foster children unfairly
  • Incapable of getting a job
  • All kids in care have many counsellors in their lives
  • They will all grow up to live on the streets
  • They are all thieves/criminals
  • They are all angry and dramatic


  • They are very smart people, even if their grades don't show it all the time
  • They are ve

Foster parents can help change the stigma of mental illness

Focus on Adoption magazine

I’ve certainly benefitted from the care of some very supportive foster parents over the years since my placement in goverment care at the age of 15. My need for care was determined by the presence of serious mental illness in the family. My beautiful and brilliant mother was a professor of linguistics at the University of Victoria when she experienced the onset of schizophrenia. It certainly doesn’t discriminate. All of the degrees, merits and accomplishments did not matter in the slow decline of her beautiful mind.

From Haiti to here

Focus on Adoption magazine

A timeline of one youth’s life from adoption, through foster care, and into independence, as told to Mary Caros.

Author’s note: This account started out as an interview with a youth as a way to allow her to give voice to her life experience. There is more to this story—and more to all of our life histories— than one person’s subjective experience. Our recollection of life events are often affected by the time and space in which we remember them. This young woman may tell her story quite differently five years from now.

Saying yes to youth

Focus on Adoption magazine

Sarah Groothedde had been in foster care since she was an infant, bouncing from home to home and suffering abuse and neglect.

As a young teenager, she asked her social worker to find her a family. The worker told her she was too old for adoption, and that it would be “against the rules” and a waste of resources to try. “All I ever wanted was a home and a family,” says Groothedde. “But it wasn’t in the cards for me.”

Everyone has a story: Meet the Calhouns

Focus on Adoption magazine

Like many couples, John Calhoun and Carly Bates found their way to adoption after experiencing infertility.

It wasn’t an out-of-left-field choice for them, though. Carly says she told John on their first date that she wanted to adopt. It just took them a few years to get there. They knew they wanted to experience what it was like to  parent a newborn, so they chose to pursue local infant adoption through an agency. Just four months after  completing the application process, they were chosen by the expectant parents of a baby boy.

Attachment-based Strategic Parenting

Focus on Adoption magazine

Attachment-based strategic parenting works with parents to develop a parent-child relationship based on empathy,  understanding, acceptance, genuineness, and playfulness.

It helps parents increase their self-confidence and feelings of warmth towards their child, and reduces parenting stress. It improves the family’s coping skills and psychosocial adjustment, and increases their ability to have fun and enjoy each  other.


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