Youth & Shelter Services, Inc.

Adoption Services

Adoption Builds Brighter Futures!Adoption
Few YSS programs are involved with families as deeply or completely as our Adoption Program.
A natural outgrowth of the YSS Foster Care Program, our Adoption Program aims at providing a permanent solution for children and youth who are looking for a family. Some come from abusive situations; others have parents who are unable or unwilling to take care of them. In Iowa, an average of 150 special needs children per month are looking for adoptive homes. Seventy percent of these children are in the family foster care system.

Does Adoption Work?
Yes! Adoption is a wonderful way of bringing new families together. Remember that adoption is a lifelong process. Adoptive parents and children work for a very long time to become a family. Past hurts are not overcome immediately - they need lots of attention. Parents need to be ready for the good and the bad days and keep a sense of humor. If you are interested in adopting a child, here are some questions you might ask yourself:
• Am I comfortable having someone new added to my family?
• Will my children and relatives be supportive about my adoption plans?
• Am I a flexible person who can deal with change and stress?
• Am I willing to be an advocate to obtain medical, mental health, and school services needed for my special needs child?
• If married, do we work as a team? Are we both equally committed to adoption?
• Do I have enough time to meet the needs of this child?
• Do I have a clear understanding of my reasons for adopting?

Who are Special Needs Children?
Special needs children awaiting adoption are defined as:
• a Caucasian child who is age 8 or older
• a child of any age with a physical or mental disability
• a child of any age with emotional or behavioral problems
• a child of any age who is developmentally disabled
• sibling groups of three or more children, to be placed together
• a sibling group of two children, one of whom has special needs
• a minority or bi-racial child

Who Can Adopt?
YSS is looking for the most appropriate family that can provide for a particular child's needs.
You can be:
• Any race
• Single or married
• Without children or have children in your home
• A renter or owner (apartment, condo, house, etc.)
• A stay-at-home parent or work outside the home

It would be beneficial if you:
• Are experienced in parenting or caring for special needs children
• Have an income adequate to care for a special needs child
• Have strong family, church, and community support
Adoption requires a family to provide a child with permanence and commitment, and an environment in which to truly grow as part of that family.
For more information about YSS' Foster Care and Adoption Programs, call Bambi Schrader at (515) 233-6011.

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