Ascentria offers a full range of adoption preparation and support services to families wishing to adopt waiting children available through the State Child Welfare system. Ascentria is a contracted agency for the Department of Children and Families to provide Massachusetts Approach to Partnership in Parenting (MAPP) training, home study and matching services for families that would like to adopt through the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF).
These children often have special mental, physical, or emotional needs stemming from a history of neglect or abuse. The children's ages may range from toddlers to 18 years old. They may be Caucasian, Hispanic, African-American or of mixed racial background, sibling groups, or children whose permanent placement involves legal challenges. Placements are made in cooperation with DCF, and in most cases fees are paid by DCF.
Once you have completed the adoption training, home study, and approval process, you will be registered with Massachusetts Resource Exchange (MARE) as a family approved for placement of a child/children with special needs. We assist in networking with agencies to locate a child who is a suitable match for your family. The wait for placement depends on the needs of the children available for adoption and your ability to meet those needs.
Steps in process:
- Inquiry – Discuss with a social worker your interest in becoming an adoptive parent. We will answer any questions and help you get started. You can also attend an informational session.
- Application - Ascentria will send you an application upon your request. Complete the form and return it to the agency. Ascentria will process your application, which includes running a background check. (BRC/SORI)
- Safety Check - Your home must pass physical standards to ensure that your household is a safe environment for a child. A social worker will visit your home to complete your safety check.
- Massachusetts Approach to Partnership in Parenting (MAPP) training – You will be invited to attend a training program. You will learn about the needs of waiting children. The training covers topics like communication, building self-esteem, child guidance and understanding behaviors. Ascentria holds MAPP training four times a year on Saturdays. The training is 30 hours.
- Home Study – A social worker will visit your home, interview your family, and request personal, medical and employer references from you. Applicants complete fingerprint checks. Following the visits and reference checks, the social worker prepares a home study document. Once your home study has been completed and approved, your family becomes licensed.
- Placement - Placement decisions are based on the ability of your family to meet the needs of a particular child or sibling group.
Ascentria provides child adoption assessments, home studies, and case consultation to the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families.