Adoption Agency Services In Central Pennsylvania
Adoptions From The Heart and its team of compassionate adoption professionals have provided a comprehensive range of adoption services to pregnant women, prospective adoptive parents and, most importantly, children since 1985. In that time, we’ve helped build 6,000 beautiful families.
Adoption Agency – Are You Pregnant & Unsure Of Your Options?
Our Team Of Adoption Specialists Is Here To Help Birth Mothers
Legal Assistance Available
Medical Care For Both Mother and Child Available
Database Of Prospective Parents Available For Review
At the center of our adoption services for pregnant women is caring, confidential counseling. Our Lancaster adoption staff is here to guide women and families expecting in their options before, during, and after placement. Available 24 / 7, our compassionate counselors seek to ensure that you are fully aware of all of your options and choose the appropriate ones for you and your child.
In the event that your choice is adoption with us, Adoptions From The Heart’s caring staff will pursue all relevant insurance matters. If you have insurance, we’ll file your claims for you. If not, we will help you find coverage, or cover any prenatal hospital bills.
Interested in learning more? Check out our “Services for Pregnant Women” page.
Non-Profit Organization – Helping To Build Families One Child At A Time
Child Adoption Agency Helping Individuals & Couples With The Domestic Adoption Process
Home Study Assistance
Information On How To Pay For Adoption
Adoption Services For Prospective Adoptive Parents
Want to find out more about adopting in Lancaster, PA? Our staff aids in both international and domestic adoptions, administering home studies and thoroughly informing families in all aspects of the adoption process.
Throughout the U.S., 1 in 25 families has an adopted child whether through domestic or international adoption. AFTH, which has been in operation since 1985, is proud to be one of the first adoption agencies in Pennsylvania to offer open adoption.
Although many prospective parents believe that domestic adoption is nearly impossible, the reality is that more than 18,000 infants are placed every single year and our adoption team is ready to help.
You can find other resources for prospective adoptive parents in Lancaster, PA below:
- International Adoption Home Studies
- Adoption Assistance Services
- Learning Center for Adoptive Parents
Other Adoption Services In Lancaster, PA
Our adoptee services program offers ongoing counseling and education to AFTH adoptees.
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Not Located In Lancaster? We Can Still Help!
Our team can help anyone in the Central Pennsylvania area and in the past, we’ve helped build families in:
- Mifflin County (Lewistown, Kistler, Burnham, Hawstone)
- Franklin County (Chambersburg, Mont Alto, Scottland, Shady Grove)
- Adams County (New Oxford, Biglerville, Gardners, Cashtown)
- Dauphin County (Harrisburg, Grantville, Halifax, Fort Hunter)
- Cumberland County (Carlisle, Newville, Shippensburg, Camp Hill)
Local Resources For A Growing Family
Central Dauphin School District
600 Rutherford Rd
Harrisburg, PA 17109
Harrisburg School District
1601 State St
Harrisburg, PA 17103
Chambersburg Area School District
435 Stanley Ave
Chambersburg, PA 17201
111 S Front St
Harrisburg, PA 17101
Lancaster General Hospital
555 N Duke St
Lancaster, PA 17602
Geisinger Lewistown Hospital
400 Highland Ave
Lewistown, PA 17044
Fun Things To Do In Central PA
100 Hersheypark Dr
Hershey, PA 17033
National Civil War Museum
1 Lincoln Cir
Harrisburg, PA 17103
Indian Echo Caverns
368 Middletown Rd
Hummelstown, PA 17063
Upcoming Adoption Webinars & Local Community Events
Webinar: Discover Domestic Infant Adoption
Latest Harrisburg and Pennsylvania Updates
By Marilyn Rich
February 4th, 2019 – PA Treasury Giving All Adopted Children $100
In response to reports about horrific student debt, the PA Treasury Department is going to now give all newborns and adopted children $100 in a savings account. Studies have shown that if a child’s family starts a savings account for college beginning at birth, that child is much more likely to graduate. The entire program is funded by donations and investments.
January 17th, 2019 – Birth Mother Talks About Her Adoption Experience
A birth mother speaks out about her experience with the adoption process. She spoke out about choosing her child’s adoptive parents, how they bonded, and the criticism that all three of them faced from outside parties. You can read more about this birth mother’s adoption journey here.
December 17th, 2018 – Family Devastated After Adoption Scam
A recent story about prospective parents in California who allege that they were impacted by an adoption scam highlights the importance of working with an experienced adoption team. The couple claims that they were contacted by a woman on Facebook who promised her unborn child to them through open adoption. For months they communicated and the woman shared ultrasound photos and information. However, when she texted the couple that she was in labor and they rushed to the hospital, doctors informed them there was no child and she was being treated for back pain.
November 18th, 2018 – Opioid Crisis May Be Resulting In More Adoptions
Throughout Pennsylvania, women are making the choice to give their children a stable home by giving them up for adoption. The reason? Many of the birth mothers are addicted to opioids. Women take steps to protect the baby by using methadone, since going cold turkey could hurt the infant. Through hard work, adoption agencies are connecting these birth mothers with waiting families.
October 30, 2018 – Chip And Joanna Gaines Help Couple Adopt Son With Special Needs
One Missouri couple’s dream came true when they received a $16,203 gift that allowed them to adopt a 2-year-old boy with special needs into their family. Jason and Melinda Simmons applied to Chip and Joanna Gaines’ annual program called Chipstarter. The couple made it into the final round of contestants to discover that all of the deserving finalists received money towards their projects and charities. The Simmons family is now able to bring home their son from China with the additional funds they received through the Chipstarter Program.
September 21, 2018 – A Philadelphia Bakery Donates Money To Adoptions From The Heart
A new bakery called Nothing Bundt Cakes opened on July 1 in Wynnewood, PA. In celebration of the opening of the new store, the owners Will and Kim Wright made a donation to Adoptions From The Heart’s Birth Parent Scholarship Fund. The owners said that it is “really important to support your neighbors” and they certainly are neighbors in the same part of town as AFTH. Maxine Chalker, founder of AFTH, and Heidi Gonzalez, associate director accepted the donation of $430 on July 25.
August 31, 2018 – Catholic Charity Closes Adoption Services Instead of Adopting To Gay Couple
On Thursday, August 23, the Catholic Charity of Buffalo in New York decided to end their adoptive services and fostering program instead of granting a license to foster or adopt to a same-sex couple. New York laws will not allow contracting organizations to discriminate against LGBTQ couples and the charity stated that the law goes against the Roman Catholic Church’s beliefs regarding marriage.
July 30, 2018 – Indiana Couple Raises Money For Adoption With An Escape Room
An Indiana couple who struggled with infertility for many years made the decision to grow their family through adoption. In an effort to raise money to cover the high cost of adoption fees the couple along with family and friends spent hours remodeling an old school bus to make it into an escape room. This particular escape room takes guests on a journey to solve a mystery about a missing man who was hunting for Bigfoot. The experience costs $20 to participate. The money will go towards the cost of adoption.
June 29, 2018 – Air Force Announces Change To Parental Policy Leave Which Includes Adoption
The Air Force announced this month that their parental leave policy would change. The previous policy used to give a mother who gave birth 12 consecutive weeks of leave and 10 days of leave to an airman whose spouse gave birth. There is now a new structure, which is already in effect, that includes birth mothers, same-sex couples, and adoptive and surrogate parents as able to receive leave.
May 3, 2018 – Sandra Bullock Wants People To Stop Using The Term “Adopted Children”
In an interview with InStyle for their June 2018 issue, Sandra Bullock spoke about her experience adopting her children and her feelings about the way people discuss their kids. She comments that people should stop referring to their kids as their adopted children because no one specifies, for example, that they have an IVF child. Rather everyone should just say they are “our children.” She also describes some of the difficulties that her family experienced during the adoption process.
April 17, 2018 – Adoption Reimbursement Available To Veterans
The Department of Veterans Affairs VA had a new rule recently approved which could allow veterans with a service-connected disability to apply for reimbursement for adoption expenses. Individuals must submit an application for the qualifying expenses no later than two years after the adoption or the date the U.S. citizenship is issued and would apply to the adoption of a child under the age of 18 years old.
March 27, 2018 – Overseas Adoptions By U.S. Citizens Continue To Decline
The State Department has released its report for the 2017 fiscal year which shows that foreign adoptions to U.S. parents have decreased again this year. Foreign adoptions last year dropped over 12 percent. This will make the decrease the 13th straight year for declining numbers which have been attributed in part to the increased interest in domestic adoption in China’s middle class. Adding to the decline this year, adoptions in several countries were suspended due to concerns about child-trafficking, corruption, and baby-selling.
February 19, 2018 – 500 Children In Chile Were Illegally Adopted In Foreign Countries
On Sunday, February 18, an investigation was released by Judge Mario Carroza which indicated that at least 500 children were illegally adopted abroad from Chile during Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship from 1973 to 1990. Prior to 1988, there was no legal framework for international adoptions to take place in Chile so anyone with interest that had the finances was accepted. Many of the victims of these illegal adoptions have been determined to be mothers in vulnerable situations.
January 17, 2018 – Navy Will Give New Dads More Paid Leave
Changes to the Navy’s paternity leave will be taking place hopefully, by next month. The Navy will be expanding the paid time off new father’s receive from 10 days to 21 days. This new policy will apply to adoptions and birth parents, allowing more time for families to welcome their newest members. The Navy is the first of the military branches to expand on leave for “secondary caregivers” and it was the first military service to expand on maternity leave in 2015.
December 27, 2017 – Law Students From Mississippi College Law School Assist In Adoptions
The adoption process in America can be a long and difficult. Many families who are looking to adopt often wait several years for it to be completed. Recently, a group of law students from Mississippi College assisted families in the process of adopting 17 children, so that the process was legally complete before Christmas! This work resulted in a large adoption ceremony on December 12. Some of the family members had been trying to adopt for up to seven years! This program not only helped adopted children and their families but gave students real-life experience in court and with the legal process.
November 30, 2017 – PA Judge Honored For Adoption Efforts Made During His Career
Judge Arthur E. Grim has served for over 30 years on the bench and is set to retire after his long career on December 31. The 74-year-old finalized several adoptions on Tuesday morning and then thought that he was heading into a reception celebrating National Adoption Month. He was surprised to discover that the celebration was in his honor to recognize all he had done for hundreds of families who adopted children during his career. As an adoptive parent himself, Judge Grim has a special place in his heart for helping these families. He received a book of photos of just some of the many families that he helped form during his career.
October 16, 2017 – National Honors Awarded To Family For Their Efforts In Adoption
The Schaeffer family from Janesville, WI was nominated by Rep. Paul Ryan (R) and has received the national honor of being Angels in Adoption. The family was honored in Washington D.C. last month but reported that they almost did not attend the event because adopting was never about recognition and honor to them. Once the family discovered they would have the opportunity to speak to Congress about the challenges of adopting they were sure to attend and take advantage of the rare opportunity. The family has adopted 6 children with special needs and used the time in front of Congress to bring awareness to the need for more foster parents and the need for training for foster and adoptive parents.
September 27, 2017 -Michigan Is Being Sued After Gay Couples Are Rejected For Adoption
Michigan is being sued for illegally allowing faith-based groups to reject same-sex couples who wish to adopt children or become foster parents. The American Civil Liberties stated this in a lawsuit challenging the practice. The ACLU stated that Michigan is violating the U.S. Constitution by permitting groups like Catholic Charities and Bethany Christian Services to use a religious test to carry out public services. A law was signed in 2015 by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, that states child-placement agencies are not required to provide services that are in conflict with their beliefs.
August 24, 2017- Interracial Adoption Is Notably On The Rise
According to new research from the Institute for Family Studies, the proportion of kindergartners who are adopted and being raised by a mother of a different race or ethnic group, increased by 50 percent between 1999 and 2011. One author and researcher alludes this to the teenage pregnancy and birth rates being low in the US and the decrease of available infants to adopt internationally, connecting those reasons with interracial adoption being an adoption option for more families now. For more information and reasons behind this increase read more here.
July 28, 2017- PA Lawmaker Pushes For More Relatives To Adopt Children
A PA lawmaker is pushing for legislation that aims to allow more relatives to adopt children who are taken into state custody. State Child Welfare Officials are believed to be blocking relatives from adopting children of their family members. The roadblocks are a nationwide issue that hinders more relatives and family members from engaging with the idea of taking kids out of foster care. Congressmen Smucker and Representative Sewell are sponsoring the legislation that passed the House last month. The legislation would direct the Department of Health and Human Services to create new adoption guidelines for states.
June 29, 2017- One-Time Adoption Bonuses To Be Awarded To Charter School Employees
In Lakeland, Florida, employees of charter and virtual schools have won the right to take advantage of a one-time bonus for adopting children from Florida’s foster care system. This has been made possible by a bill that was signed into a law by Gov. Rick Scott early this month. The bill amends Florida Statute 409.1664 which provides $10,000 for each adopted child. The bonus will be available to certain state employees as well as teachers. Before this amendment was made, employees of charter and virtual schools were excluded from adoption bonuses.
May 30, 2017- Father Thanks Adopted Daughter For Not Giving Up Searching For Him
A woman who was adopted 40 years ago as a baby, spent 21 years looking for her birth parents. The woman was found outside of Prince Rupert Regional Hospital wrapped in a green blanket. She asked for birth records as soon as it was legal to do so, in search of her parents. Unfortunately, the paper she received did not have a lot of information she could use. She searched hospital records, shared her story with reporters and made public appeals for more information. She finally published her story on Rupertsbaby.com and a man emailed her with a story similar to her own which led to the revelation that it was her half-sibling. Meeting her half sibling led to knowing the name of her birth mother and she eventually learned some of the people her mother had dated. She searched through yearbooks after she knew the name of one the men her mother dated, which led to getting a full name and phone number. She called him and thought she may have found her father. A paternity test revealed she had. Her father had no idea she existed.
April 28, 2017- Family Overjoyed After Adopting A Little Girl With No Limbs
A family from West Jordan in Utah has received national attention after a blog post about their adoptive daughter went viral. You can read the post here. The couple adopted a 3-year-old girl from the Philippines who was born with no limbs. Her condition is called congenital limb difference. The couple had not planned to adopt a child with special needs, but they instantly fell in love with Maria when they first saw her picture. They ended up adopting her a year and a half later. The parents state that their daughter is full of personality, full of joy and light, and they wake up every day with smiling because of her. Maria is the second child the couple adopted from the Philippines and they have two other biological children.
March 24, 2017- New Bill Under Consideration For Grandparents To Know About Adoption
A new bill called House Bill 1245 is being introduced in Indiana to allow grandparents to receive notification of a child’s adoption. The bill came about after a grandparent was denied visitation of a grandchild being adopted. The intention of the bill is to allow grandparents to be notified and have the opportunity to choose whether they want to petition the courts for visitation of their grandchild.
February 28, 2017- The Changing Landscape Of Adoptions
The adoption landscape is believed to have changed over the last few years and it could be impacting families looking to adopt. Domestically, there a fewer single mothers that are putting their babies up for adoption. One of the reasons why this is happening is due to the fact that there is less of a stigma attached with single women raising children on their way. In addition, private infant adoptions have declined in the United States almost nine-fold since the early 1970s. To date, there are about 14,000 private adoptions a year.
September 12th, 2016 – Preparations For National Adoption Day Are Underway
November 19th is National Adoption Day and throughout the state of Pennsylvania, plans are underway to promote awareness and educate the public about adoption. To learn more, check this out National Adoption Day
What Our Clients Say About Us
"Adoptions From The Heart is the best! My husband and I had considered adopting for years but were unsure of where to even begin. We contacted the amazing team at Adoptions From The Heart and they answered every single question we had - I was sure we would try their patience! Ultimately they helped us with the adoption of our son and we couldn't be happier."Rating: 5.0 ★★★★★