Grants: Several organizations provide grants to prospective adoptive parents. However, you typically must have your home study done before you can apply. Some grants are geared particularly toward certain communities. For example, Lifetime Adoption Center has the African-American Enrichment Program, which offers grants between $1,000 and $4,000. Should you plan to apply for grants, expect to fill out a lot of paperwork, says Walrod, who maintains a database of more than 70 adoption grant and loan opportunities at Resources4Adoption.com.
Fundraising: Many people find creative ways, or they capitalize on a hobby such as sewing, to finance adoption. Working a second job to bring in extra money is another option. Others enlist the aid of their families and friends by asking them to make a financial contribution to an adoption fund or to donate furniture and other items that can be sold on eBay, says Gumm.
Financing: Taking out an adoption loan is another alternative, however, just be wary of predatory lenders looking to take advantage of families that are in an emotionally vulnerable state, warns Walrod, who has come across adoption loans with interest rates as high as 25%. “Any time you get [interest rates] in the double digits, you need to proceed with caution,â€ she says. Check with your credit union or bank, Walrod suggests. Also, some organizations offer low-interest and interest-free loans for adoption, such as the ABBA Fund (www.abbafund.org) and Lifesong Legacy Fund (www.lifesongfororphans.org).
While the financial path to adoption is not easy, there are plenty of resources to make the journey less taxing. And the reward is worth the effort, says Brown, who can’t imagine life without 2-and-a-half-year-old Kendra. “I love every minute with her.â€