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In the state of Illinois there are thousands of children who need a loving and caring home. Fortunately, in the last 10 years, more than 15,000 thousand children have experienced the real sense of the word family, thanks to wonderful families across the country who have provided loving homes, by adopting a child under the watchful eye of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

Adoption is a serious and life-changing decision. Once the adoption procedure is finalized, you become the legal parent of the child and the IL DCFS is no longer responsible for the child’s care and custody. As an adoptive parent you will assume all rights and responsibilities to make important decisions related to the life of the child, including major medical care and treatments and education, but keep in mind that the non-profit partners of the Department are always here to offer their professional help. If you are planning to adopt, make sure you are well aware of the consequences of your decision, since it will not only affect your life, but it will change the life of the adopted child as well.

Foster Care

Foster families actually provide children placed under the protection of IL DCFS by a court order with a loving, temporary home. Although the main goal of the Department is to reunite these children with their birth families, sadly, sometimes the reunification is not an option due to numerous reasons (such as court decisions), so many foster care families decide to permanently adopt the child they had taken care of for so long.

Foster families have proven to be of great need in all parts of Illinois. But in order to be a foster parent, you must meet certain qualifications. These are as follows:

  • You need to be a minimum of 21 years old.
  • You must be married, divorced, separated or in a civil union.
  • You must be stable in terms of your finances.
  • You (and all others in your home) must go through a background check for criminal history.
  • You must get medically screened to make sure all your immunizations are current.
  • You must go through an inspection of your home.
  • You must undergo a social exam.
  • You must finish 27 foster care training hours.

If you fit the aforementioned profile and you have a sincere desire to help a child in need, then contact the Adoption Information Center of Illinois, which is a non-profit partner of the DCFS, and they will provide you with listings of children who currently need a foster family.

Illinois Licensed Adoption Agencies

According to the Illinois law, agencies which provide adoption services must be licensed by the Department of Children and Family Services in order to protect the right of all included parties: the children, the birth parents and the adoptive parents. Some of these adoption agencies are listed below:

  • Hoyleton Youth and Family Services CWA
  • Bethany for Children & Families
  • Family Service Center
  • Children’s Home Association of Illinois
  • Gateway Woods Family Services Illinois
  • Family Preservation Community Services CWA
  • Guardian Angel Community Services CWA