A home study is something every hopeful adoptive parent goes through. The home study is a detailed examination of your values, finances, health, parenting style, and more. The person who approves your home study is essentially giving you the okay to become an adoptive parent.
Not sure what the home study looks like? This is what you need to know.
Who Is in Charge of a Home Study?
A home study is typically carried out by a licensed social worker. He or she will visit your home and interview you and people in your life. Each agency and social worker may have a different approach to the home study.
What Do You Need to Initiate a Home Study?
You need to undergo a lot of paperwork and training in order to be prepared for your home study. You will need to undergo a background check, which includes fingerprints. You need to provide a summary of your life history and provide health reports that survey your health. You must show that you have completed training and put together a financial summary, which includes your budget, debts, and tax returns.
To be prepared, you also need to gather references of people who can be contacted to vouch for you. You also need proof of your identity, which may include birth certificates, passports, and more.
The home study also involves examining the safety of your home. You need to develop an emergency plan for your home in the case of a fire, for instance. You also need to provide evidence of a smoke detector, fire extinguisher, and necessary pool gates, for instance.
What Is the Home Study Like?
Home studies can seem intimidating from afar, but they do not have to be. Social workers will ask a lot of questions, and you need to be honest with the social worker. They will speak to members of your home one-on-one as well. The questions might involve some tough subjects you may not necessarily feel comfortable discussing with a stranger, but it is still important that you are honest and genuine.
This person is not there to trick or interrogate you. They simply want to ensure that you can provide a safe, healthy home for the child you want to adopt. They are there to protect children, which is something you are there to do too. You have a common ground, and you can work together for a better future.
If you need help preparing for an open adoption, contact an adoption service in your area.