Any time after an adoptive placement, the adopted child, adoptive parent or both may have issues, questions or concerns about the adoption. The Georgia Department of Family and Children Services (DFCS) has established the following programs to assist adopted children and adoptive families in meeting these needs, as well as to provide support services that can help further the child’s development:
The Adopted Teen Empowerment & Mentoring Program (ATEAM)
is a statewide post adoption service program designed for adopted teens in 6th—12th grades. The ATEAM provides teen participants with an opportunity for mutual support and self-expression through group interactions with other adopted teens and is hosted monthly by both public and private colleges and youth facilities across the state of Georgia. ATEAM support meetings are held one Saturday each month and are generally from 9:30 am – 4:30 pm with one weekend leadership institute planned each year.
Adoption Reunion Registry
The Georgia Department of Family and Children Services (DFCS) can assist you with a family search through the Adoption Reunion Registry. For all the services listed below, the consent of each involved individual must first be received. DFCS will gather and register each party’s consent or dissent.
Adult Search for Biological Parents
If you are an adult child of adoption (21 years or older), DHR will provide assistance in establishing contact with your biological parents. If the adopted person is deceased, the same service can be provided to the adult child of the deceased adopted person.
Adult Search for Siblings
Adult siblings (21 years or older) seeking contact with each other will receive assistance from DHR, provided one is an adoptee.
Birth Parent Search for a Child Placed for Adoption
If you are a birth parent who placed a child for adoption, DFCS will provide assistance in establishing contact, provided the adopted child is over the age of 21 years. If the birth parent is deceased, parents or siblings of the deceased birth parent may receive the same services from DFCS to establish contact with the adopted child.
Access to Background Information
For the adopted individual over the age of 18, DFCS will provide non-identifying information from your sealed adoption record without a court order. If you are under the age of 18, your adopted family must request this information.
Biological Family Assistance
DFCS will assist a biological family in giving consent to release identifying information or to contact the adopted family with this information. In turn, DFCS will also register the desire to have this information protected, which involves prohibiting the release of identifying birth family information from the sealed adoption record.
Georgia Center For Resources & Support
GACRS staff coordinates referrals to many resources throughout the state. As a non-profit, community-based program all services are offered free to all adoptive and foster families living in Georgia. In addition, adoptive families residing in Georgia can use these services regardless of the origin of their adoption. Individuals and families who participate in the Georgia Center for Resources and Support can build on their parenting strengths, enhance their ability to manage situational change, access appropriate community support and resources, and improve their effectiveness as parents within their home and in their community. Regional Resource Advisors are located in communities throughout the state and are available to help families clarify their needs, locate resources and feel supported as they resolve concerns encountered as an adoptive and/or foster care family. GACRS administrative office and library are located at 80 Joseph E. Lowery Boulevard NW, Atlanta, GA 30314-3421.
To learn more about GACRS please visit their website: www.gacrs.org or call 1 866 A PARENT or (404 929-0401).
For additional support and assistance please contact:
Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry
(404) 657-3555 or toll-free, (888) 328-0055.