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  Program Manager: Karyn Bakelaar
Tel: 613-226-2112 Ext. 231,
Email Karyn

  Please note:
The USA program currently has open spaces.
As ASC can only accept a small number of applications from Canadian families, only applications from childless couples and those experiencing infertility and secondary infertility due to medical reasons will now be accepted. Applications will also be considered from families that have adopted from ASC in the past or that have one other adopted child in the home.

General Information:
  • The Children’s Bridge is working in partnership with Adoption by Shepherd Care (ASC), which is based in Hollywood, Florida.
  • Adoptive family is chosen by an expectant mother/father who wish to make an adoption plan for their child.
  • Children are mainly of African-American descent. To a lesser extent, children who are ethnically biracial, Hispanic, and/or Caucasian are sometimes placed for adoption.
  • Infants are placed with adoptive family approximately 10 – 14 days following the birth.
  • Adoption is finalized in Florida approximately 6 months after placement. Family does not need to travel to Florida for finalization, but must present for the finalization hearing by phone.
  • Children can maintain dual citizenship.
  • Time from dossier submission to receiving a proposed match is approximately 9 – 18 months.
  • Applicants must be open to semi-open adoptions, as they will need to exchange pictures and letters with the birth family through the agency until the child reaches 18. Some situations may allow for more openness.
  • Applicants will complete a checklist outlining various situations they are open to (i.e. some alcohol use by the birth mother, history of mental illness, unknown birth father, etc.).
  • In many situations, the adoptive family will have the opportunity to meet the birth mother/father during their trip to Florida.
  • Children with various special needs are also available (i.e. Hep C, HIV, prenatal exposure to possible substance abuse, etc.).
  • 3 post-placement reports are required during the first 90 days home in order to finalize the adoption.
  • Children will reside in an interim home care until placement occurs with the adoptive family.

Requirements:

  • Applicants must be over the age of 25 and no older than 52 years old when their dossier is sent to Florida.
  • This program is open to married couples only. Married couples must have been married for a minimum of 1 year by the time their dossier is received in Florida. No same sex couples or singles are permitted to apply.
  • Applicants must be in sound physical and emotional health. Adoptive applicants must be free of major mental illness such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and obsessive compulsive disorder.
  • Applicants must be open to signing an “Exchange Agreement” with the potential birth family. Almost all of the adoptions will be considered “semi-open”, in that letters and pictures will be exchanged through the agency and available to birth family until the child has reached the age of eighteen (18).
  • Some situations may allow for more openness such as prenatal doctor visits, face-to-face visits between the child, adoptive family, and birth family, depending on the specific situation and birth mother’s desires/needs.
  • Adoptive families will have the opportunity to meet the birth mother/family after the birth of the baby in most situations.
  • Family must possess a stable financial portfolio.
  • At least one member of the couple MUST be a Canadian citizen.
  • Both adoptive applicants must be free from criminal records.
  • This program is open to residents of Ontario only at this time.

Process:

  • Complete consultation with Program Manager.
  • Submit ASC’s preliminary application form.
  • Completion of home study, PRIDE training and approval in province.
  • Once approval is received and dossier has been compiled, all is notarized and submitted to ASC in Florida.
  • Match received and reviewed.

Timelines

  • Completion of home study (average time 3 – 6 months).
  • Approval in province varies from 4 – 16 weeks.
  • Processing of adoption dossier averages 4 – 6 weeks.
  • Wait for proposal approximately 9 – 18 months.
  • Travel to Florida approximately 10 – 14 days after birth.
  • One trip of 7 – 14 days is required.