Adoption Financial Assistance: Programs and Resources

A mother holding her son
| 7 min read Financial Assistance

Adoption gives you the joy of adding a child to your family while making a lasting positive impact in their life. Not only are you giving a child in need a loving, permanent home, but you’re fulfilling your dreams of raising a child and expanding your family. Financial assistance for adoptive parents is often needed since adoption is cost-prohibitive for a lot of families.

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Why is adoption important? 

Every parent has their own personal reasons for adopting, but it remains incredibly important for the wellbeing of children around the world. The benefits of adoptions include safe shelter and family support for those children and youth in need.

  • There are nearly 400,000 children and youth currently in the U.S. foster care system and adoption provides a safe, stable home for them. 
  • UNICEF reported that there are more than 140 million orphans globally, who have lost one or both parents and are now living with a grandparent, and the number continues to increase.
  • A large percentage of adopted children have positive feelings about their adoption. They are raised with the understanding that adoption is special and that both their adoptive and birth families love them.

How much does adoption cost?

If this is your first adoption, you may be wondering how to find adoption financial assistance. Adoption can be quite costly—a private adoption can range from $30,000 to $45,000, including legal fees, court documentation prep, home studies, and more.

Luckily there are many resources available that provide adoption financial assistance for adoptive parents, and in this guide, you’ll find plenty of fundraising ideas and learn how to raise money for adoption.

Best adoption grants

Many parents apply for adoption grants for adoption fees and other costs. While grants are a welcome source of relief for adoption financial assistance, they have eligibility requirements—plus a waiting period before you receive funds. Take a look at a few popular programs based in the US to find the best adoption grants for you.

A Child Waits

A Child Waits foundation provides information and resources on adoption grants for international adoption of up to $7,000. The grant can cover any aspect of the adoption the parents please, from placement agency fees and training, to personal travel expenses.

Gift of Adoption Fund

The Gift of Adoption Fund provides grants for adoption assistance for both domestic and international adoptions. It awards monthly adoption grants of up to $10,000 to adoptive families in need.

Help Us Adopt

A nonprofit supporting domestic, international, and foster care adoptions, provides quarterly grants for adoption fees, including agency or lawyer fees, up to $15,000. For more resources and additional information, click the link above.

Adoption loans

Some families also turn to loans as a way to afford their adoption. A loan can be a great source of relief, though keep in mind that the entire amount must be repaid, usually with interest. Here are a few places to look if you are considering adoption funding.


A personal loan through SoFi can cover adoption costs up to $100,000, with interest rates starting at 5.99%. A personal loan request through SoFi can cover adoption costs up to $100,000, with interest rates starting at 5.99%.

Hebrea Loan Society

If you live in New York City, the Hebrew Loan Society can provide an interest-free loan up to $25,000 to pay for adoption expenses.

A Child Waits

Also offering loans for international adoptions, A Child Waits provides loans up to $10,000 with a fixed interest rate of 3%.


Another interest-free loan option, ABBA Fund provides adoption loans averaging $7,000 to Christian families.

Government adoption financial assistance

Financial assistance for adoptive families is available through government tax credits, subsidies, and grants. Many states offer an adoption subsidy to residents interested in adopting a child. There’s also financial help for foster parents. Each program has specific eligibility criteria, and funds may take significant time to be received. Carefully review the following resources to learn more about programs in your area.

1. Adoption assistance by state

The US Children’s Bureau maintains a database of adoption assistance by state to help prospective parents navigate various state and federal policies surrounding adoption. This includes explaining eligibility criteria for state-funded child welfare programs.

2. US Adoption assistance subsidy

State governments provide financial help for foster parents who choose to adopt. You may request a monthly adoption assistance subsidy payment, with the amount varying by state and age of the children or any other special needs you may have.

3. Adoption tax credit

A common question is, “does the government fund adoptions?” If you live in the US, you may be eligible for adoption tax credit through the Internal Revenue Service. This adoption tax credit applies to the year in which you adopted a child. You can claim reasonable adoption fees, court or attorney fees, and all travel costs as adoption expenses. This tax credit also means you don’t have to report any employer benefits related to adoption as income. The maximum adoption tax credit for 2022 is $14,890 per child.

How to raise money for adoption

Crowdfunding is another popular way to raise money for adoption expenses. Whether you are looking to adopt a foster child, pursuing an international adoption, or need help with childcare costs for the newest member of your family, online fundraising is a hassle-free way to meet your goals. With online fundraising, there are no applications or deadlines, zero wait times to receive your funds, and you never have to pay the money back—every penny goes to you and your child. Look at these adoption fundraising ideas to help make your fundraiser a success.

1. Tell your adoption story

Connect with your donors by writing a compelling fundraiser story. Explain how much this adoption means to you and your family and how each donation will impact your adoption funding.

2. Consider hosting a fundraising event

Throw a fundraising event for the whole community. Host an adoption picnic or barbeque in a local park. Share the event on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and by email to spread the word and raise your goal quickly. 

3. Ask your community for support

As another way to fundraise without social media, have a yard sale to raise funds for your adoption. Consider asking friends and neighbors to donate items they no longer need.

4. Bolster your financial help with employer-provided adoption benefits

Many employers also offer financial benefits to parents choosing to adopt a child. In a 2019 survey of over 200 U.S. companies, only 20% offered a financial adoption benefit. Check to see what employer-provided adoption benefits are offered, from adoption funding to parental leave. Every little bit of adoption funding counts! Look at the list of resources and additional information on the adoption-friendly workplaces ranked by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.

Families who used crowdfunding for adoption costs

Read on to discover how other families used the power of crowdfunding to pay their adoption costs.

Wendt family adoption

After the tragic loss of their twin boys, Luisa and Jarrett turned their sights to adoption. Their dream was to adopt a baby from Colombia, Luisa’s home country. Through their fundraiser, they were able to raise over $25,000 to cover the cost of a home study, immigration paperwork, and agency fees you may have. Their prayers were answered with not one, but two babies—a twin boy and girl—who they welcomed into their family.

Calderon-Loper family adoption

Daniel and Anthony always wanted to have a family, and knew that adoption could help make that dream a reality. They started a fundraiser and began the process of becoming adoptive parents. After months of searching, they were finally matched with their son, and raised nearly $5,000 to help support their goal to become one of many adoptive families.

Financial adoption assistance for every step

Fundraising through GoFundMe can make your dream of expanding your family come true. Crowdfunding can help you quickly raise the money you need, no matter what stage you are in along your adoption journey. Sign up today and start your adoption fundraiser to adopt the child you’ve always wanted.

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Written by GoFundMe