Supporting LGBTQ+ Families
Kids Above All is proud to support foster and adoptive home licensing of all individuals – regardless of their orientation or identification – including members of the LGBTQ+ community across all spectrums. We ensure that the children and youth in our care are placed with dedicated foster or adoptive parents in nurturing and safe homes that encourage their learning and growth.
Kids Above All’s experienced staff provides comprehensive case management and supportive services for both the children and those who foster LGBTQ youth, including counseling and referrals to community resources.
Meet Mrs.K and CJ
One of Kids Above All’s seasoned foster parents, Mrs. K, has a long history of working with foster youth. She has always been a strong advocate for her kids and highly values creating a home full of love and support. She sits on the DCFS Foster Parent Advisory Board and is one of the KAA Foster Parent Advisors. To this day, she is still an active participant at Kids Above All’s foster care events and trainings.
Mrs. K recently adopted an 11 year old youth named CJ. He is a soft-spoken, smart, and creative individual who also plays different sports during his free time. Mrs. K noticed that despite CJ being happy about his adoption, he still seemed worried at times. Eventually, he told her that he was curious about exploring his identity and sexuality.
Mrs. K realized that she needed more guidance to be able to properly support CJ. At one of Kid Above All’s foster care events, Mrs. K met with Kids Above All’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Manager, Stoyan Francis. They discussed CJ’s interest in speaking with someone about transitioning and exploring his identity. Stoyan reassured Mrs. K that though most people identify strongly with the gender they’re assigned to at birth, it’s not uncommon for a person to identify strongly with another gender later on. Stoyan stressed the importance of allowing CJ to guide and direct his own exploration process.
Together, Stoyan and Mrs. K assured CJ that they were there for him and they had information/resources for him if he needed them, which he eventually did ask to see. They connected him to the LGBTQI DCFS Youth Advisory Board which allowed him to meet youth who could answer his questions and concerns, and who also had the shared experience of being a youth in care. Kids Above All also connected Mrs. K to DCFS’s LGBTQI training to help her be a more educated and supportive parent for CJ throughout his journey.
Now, Mrs. K and CJ are learning together. The two are receiving the support and direction they need to reach their full potential.
FAQ for Potential LGBTQ+ Foster Parents
- Are members of the LGBTQ+ community starting families?*
Yes! A 2013 Pew Research survey found that 51% of LGBT adults either currently have children or plan to have children in the future.
- Are LGBTQ+ couples adopting?*
The number of LGBTQ+ couples adopting in the U.S. has definitely increased over the years. According to U.S. Census data, LGB parents are 4.5 times more likely to be raising adopted children than heterosexual parents. Approximately 2,600 same-sex couples are raising foster children.
- Does federal law protect adoption rights for members of the LGBTQ+ community?**
U.S. federal law protects adoption rights for LGBTQ+ parents, however, individual state laws and regulations may make adoption in certain states more difficult. Researching the laws in your state is important, as is researching specific adoption agencies.
- Is it easy for LGBTQ+ couples to adopt internationally?**
Over the past decade, international adoption among LGBTQ+ foster parents has declined significantly. Due to anti-LGBTQ+ laws, in certain countries adoption may be banned, limiting options for potential foster parents.
*Adopted from www.lgbtqiahealtheducation.org/wp-content/uploads/Pathways-to-Parenthood-for-LGBT-People.pdf
**Adopted from www.whattoexpect.com/family/lgbtq-adoption-guide
- Adopt US Kids
- CenterLink LGBT Community Center Member Directory
- Child Welfare Information Gateway: Adoption by Family Type: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) Families
- Child Welfare Information Gateway: Planning for Adoption: Knowing the Costs and Resources
- Family Equality National Network of LGBTQ Family Groups
- North American Council on Adoptable Children: State Adoption Assistance Programs
- U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs Resources for LGBTI Adoption
**Retrieved from www.whattoexpect.com/family/lgbtq-adoption-guide