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The Adoption Process

The adoption process is standardised and will follow more or less the same process for all candidates applying to adopt locally. The process can take as quick as a couple of months, or you can do it in stages, it depends totally on you.

Private Adoptions:

  1. An orientation/information session with your chosen Social Worker to discuss the process in full and to answer any of your questions and address any of your concerns.
  2. Interviews, home visits and contacts and references.
  3. A medical assessment.
  4. A psycho-social assessment which includes employment, housing, income, relationships, personality etc.
  5. SAPS clearance
  6. Clearance from the National Child Protection Register
  7. Clearance from the National Register of Sexual Offenders
  8. Once all of this is completed, your Social Worker will prepare a screening report with a recommendation regarding your suitability to adopt.
  9. Once this report is completed, it will be presented at a panel meeting, where a number of Social Workers meet) to discuss your application and approve your suitability.
  10. You will need to prepare a profile (see our profile assistance page for more info)
  11. If all cleared, you will be put onto RACAP (Register on Adoptable Children and Prospective Adoptive Parents) and you will await THE CALL.

Child Welfare/NGO Adoptions:

  1. Phone your local Child Welfare office and book an information meeting.
  2. At the information meeting the process will be explained and preliminary paperwork completed.
  3. Complete the forms which include family histories and medicals for the prospective parent(s). The medicals need to be done by your doctor and involve blood tests for HIV and syphilis.
  4. Discuss references with your close friends, choosing 3 non-family members for your social worker to contact.
  5. Interviews as a couple and individually. If you are a single parent, you may have interviews with two different social workers or just one interview.
  6. Home visit. At the home visit the social worker will inspect your home and interview you in your home setting.
  7. Group session with other prospective adoptive parents to discuss negative social attitudes towards adoption as well as any feelings about your infertility and how to prepare a profile.
  8. Create your profile
  9. Once you are approved you will wait to receive THE CALL.

Regardless of whether you use a private social worker or an NGO or Child Welfare, it’s from this point that adoption gets tough…. the waiting. Generally no-one will be able to tell you how long or short you will wait and so all you can do is get on with your lives as best you can (easier said than done!).

For more on the adoption process in South Africa visit these links:

– Content courtesy of Trinity Heart and Saskia Williams