Adoption and Financial Assistance: Tools for Navigating the Bureaucracy

By Rita Laws; Tim O'Hanlon | Go to book overview

Foreword

In my experience in working with adoption and foster care issues, it has always struck me that individuals who choose to parent children with special needs are a particularly special type of people. Even if they did not know the specific nature of their child's condition at the time of the adoption, they rose to the occasion when the need presented itself--through the therapies, medical appointments, surgeries, behavior outbreaks, and more. They did so for the love of their children.

Public and private agencies throughout the country have always been pleased to recruit these adoptive parents, but many--certainly not all--are less willing and often unprepared to provide the ongoing support services that will keep these families strong and together. Therefore, parents find themselves at odds with the very people who helped create their precious families. Many parents find it difficult under these circumstances to "rock the boat." Others want to advocate for their children but do not even know the first step in doing so.

Adoption and Financial Assistance: Tools for Navigating the Bureaucracy provides a useful how-to framework for advocating for children with special needs and does so in an easy-to-read fashion. The book outlines step-by-step strategies for negotiating with your agency, organizing through a parent support group, and obtaining valuable adoption subsidies both prior to and after finalization.

Parents will find themselves identifying with the many stories throughout the book and saying out loud, "That's happened to me before!" And the reason parents will be able to relate to the book is because of the authors and their backgrounds. Dr. O'Hanlon writes from the perspective of an administrator within the system who has spent his career advocating for

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