So maybe you’re thinking about adopting, but the financial side of it scares you. A lot. So much, that you’re not really thinking about adopting anymore. The bad news is, yeah, it’s expensive. The good news is, there are lots of resources out there to make it easier to a) afford and b) fundraise.
Your initial fees will be your homestudy and application fees. This is a daunting step, as first steps usually are. Once you have the homestudy, you are eligible to apply for grants and loans, and individual donors will have more confidence that you’ve been approved and are ready to move forward.
Cut costs, save, work extra hours, sell your furniture, whatever. Start an adoption account.
Next step: fundraise! Now, I know that probably makes some of you independent-capitalist types break out in hives. Lemme explain. You can pay for your adoption out of your Dave Ramsey adoption envelope, but if you don’t have a spare 15-25k lying around, that doesn’t mean you’re ineligible! Adoption is a cause that is meaningful to many, but not everyone is going to adopt. So those people want to give to a cause, and they will be blessed to give toward your adoption fund.
I recommend starting a blog, where you talk about why you’re adopting, who you are, and how much it’s going to cost. You’ll be surprised at how many people just don’t know the process and are genuinely interested in learning. A useful fundraising tool that runs straight through Paypal is ChipIn.com. It’s basically a tracker of how much you’ve raised, how much is left, and you can post widgets to your various social networks. Get the word out! Write letters to your non-techie family, talk about it at church, etc.
A note here: some people are genuinely offended by fundraising. Don’t solicit those people. Find adoption-friendly community and keep your spirits up. It’s about helping children.
Once you’ve started informing everyone about your plan and your need, move on to grants. Google “adoption grants” and apply for everything you qualify for. One grant that was really helpful to us was from The Zoe Foundation. Matching grants are especially helpful; we used Hand in Hand Christian Adoption. There are LOTS more, check for specific ones in your state or for your specific adoption goals, i.e. minority adoption, special needs, etc. There are also adoption loans with really flexible terms, research those, too.
It’s not impossible. I have talked to many adoptive families who tell the same story: when the bill came due, the money was there. These are some practical tips, but more importantly, we have a big God who is all about adoption (Romans 8:15), and He will make a way.