At Durham Children’s Aid Society we provide services for people interested in adopting a child, and for people seeking information about a previous adoption (an adult adoptee or the relative of an adult adoptee).
If you are interested in adopting a child
There are many children in Ontario who are waiting for an adoptive family. Children come into our care for various reasons, but all of them are need someone to care for them, and provide a stable and nurturing home.
Are you eligible to adopt?
The following are the minimum requirements to begin the application process:
- Residency in Durham Region
- Minimum 21 years of age
- Good general health
- Financially self-sufficient
- Stable relationship for two years (including same-sex couples, common-law, single applicants)
- Consent of all immediate family members
- Demonstrated healthy individual and family histories
- Sound mental health
- No substance abuse; no condoning of illegal substances
- No criminal charges pending or significant criminal background
- No verified or suspected incidents of child abuse
- Adequate living and sleeping premises for a child
- Demonstrated ability to carry out essential duties of parenting
- Ability to ensure a child will have appropriate developmental environment
- Adequate language and communication skills
- Willingness to learn new skills
- Willingness to work with the agency and other professionals
- Adequate understanding of adoptive care
- Adequate understanding of circumstances around which children come into the care of CAS
- Sensitivity to cultural differences and backgrounds of children
Any previous CAS service involvement will be evaluated on an individual basis for eligibility.
There are many steps in the adoption process. Some are very fast, while other steps require more time and careful consideration.
If you considering adoption, please contact our Adoption Department for more information and to be invited to our next orientation night. You may choose to apply after attending this session.
Once we receive an application, you will be placed on a wait list for PRIDE (Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education) training. PRIDE is the standardized education program provided across Ontario to prepare applicants to foster or adopt children.
Finding a family for our children
In planning for the adoption of a child, we select adoptive parents that are capable of meeting the needs of the child.
The agency is committed to the ongoing local and provincial recruitment of prospective adoptive families who are able to meet the special needs of children available for adoption.
We may consider some of the following when choosing an adoptive home:
- Parent’s strengths and abilities
- Experience with children and dealing with difficult situations
- Extended family support
- Parent’s ability and willingness to cope with child’s needs now and in the future
- Experience with adoption
- Ability and willingness to accept natural family involvement if in best interest of child
- Culturally similar background as child
- Ability to work within agency structure
The agency ensures that, where appropriate, the wishes of the child are taken into consideration in the selection of an adoptive family in accordance with the best interests of the child.
Once a family has been chosen the adoption worker meets with them to share non-identifying information about the child, his or her life experiences, health and family background to ensure that the adoptive family is accepting of the child’s background and needs.
Once a match has been made, the transition process begins. The length of the is process varies based on the age and needs of the child.
Where it is determined that there are no prospective adoptive families within our jurisdiction who can meet the special needs of a child, we broaden the search. An adoption worker compiles a non-identifying profile of the child that is sent to the other CAS’s within Ontario.
Where the search within the province does not produce a suitable family, we present the child’s profile at the Adoption Resource Exchange where anyone in the province with an approved Adoption Home Study can view information about all children currently available for adoption. The child’s profile may also be placed on the Adoptontario databank.