What help is available for adoptive families?
We are committed to ensuring a smooth transition as you grow your family through adoption or guardianship, and DCFS offers a range of supports to families depending on your needs, including:
- Reimbursement for costs associated with the adoption or guardianship, such as attorney fees and court costs;
- Continued support of the child's basic needs like food and clothing through monthly adoption subsidies;
- Supplemental assistance with health care needs through enrollment in Medicaid;
- Support groups, counseling, ongoing training;
- Counseling services for the family and child, if needed; and
- Therapeutic day care.
Caring & Sharing: An Adoption Informed Approach to Serving Families online training now available
Illinois DCFS is now offering Caring & Sharing: An Adoption Informed Approach to Serving Families on-demand online training. The one-hour self-paced training is designed for professionals who serve Illinois children and families in school, healthcare and mental health settings. The training will help providers recognize concerns that could be adoption-related and develop an adoption-informed response that leads to better outcomes. The information presented will increase awareness for the need of a continuum of post-adopt/guardianship services and where to get them. To access the training, click here.
Virtual Training Center (VTC)
The DCFS on-line Virtual Training Center (VTC) is the entry point for training-related information and resources. Adoptive parents can use the Virtual Training Center (VTC) to:
- See training news and general information;
- Check available trainings;
- View/print training transcripts;
- Register and take on-line courses; and
- Download course materials to use in class or to access after training.
To access the VTC, go to www.dcfstraining.org
Service Provider IDentification and Exploration Resource (SPIDER)
The Service Provider IDentification and Exploration Resource (SPIDER) is a free, comprehensive service resource database for youth and families in Illinois. SPIDER connects you to nearby organizations offering programs and services to support children and families, including detailed information on more than 1,700 agencies and over 4,200 social service programs. All agencies and programs are geo-coded to allow you to locate resources near your preferred location.
SPIDER provides detailed information on agencies and programs that offer mental health services, caregiver support, educational advocacy, vocational and employment training, mentoring, enrichment programs like leadership development and after school programs and much more. To begin using SPIDER, click here: spider.dcfs.illinois.gov. To learn more, read the SPIDER brochure in English or en español.
Need help or want to know more?
The Adoption Support Line has a new number: 866-538-8892 or 312-808-5250. Adoptive and subsidized guardianship parents can now reach the Statewide Adoption Unit by calling one of these new phone numbers. After dialing the new number, an automated greeting will ask callers to select the area of the state where they live. DCFS staff will then direct the caller to the office or adoption worker needed to resolve the question. Adoptive parents (both prospective and post-adoption) can also contact their adoption worker directly.
For an overview of the many services available to meet your child's ongoing needs, read the DCFS publication Post Adoption and Guardianship Services in English or en español.