How to interview an agency

To decide the best fit for you, we encourage you to interview agencies about their processes, preferences, and abilities. Here are five questions to ask while interviewing agencies.

Five questions to ask an agency

What makes your agency different?

This question will help to identify what an agency values and how that shapes their work. The right agency should have values that match yours and should be able to explain how their approach benefits youth and families.

How does your process work from start to placement?

The answer to this question will help you know what your responsibilities will be and what the agency will do. For example, who makes a formal inquiry about a youth—you or the agency? What type of support will they provide?

What fees do you charge?

This question will give you the answer to exactly what costs you can expect so there are no surprises later on. State child welfare agencies will be largely free of cost, while most private agencies will have fees for the application, home study, and adoption.

Do you support out-of-state adoption?

This question will answer if the agency will support making inquiries on youth who are in a different state. If your agency is not supportive of inquiring on youth in other states, it could prevent you from adopting a youth from another state. Chances are, there are youth in your state who need you and who you would be a good fit for. But knowing what your options are is important, particularly if you live near a state border.

Have you worked with families like ours?

This question will identify if and how the program would fit the needs of your family. Knowing that an agency has (or hasn't) helped families like yours can be important information in deciding if an agency can be an effective advocate on your behalf.