Who is eligible to apply for an adoption assistance grant from The Gift of Adoption Fund?

Any U.S. citizen who has an approved adoption home study* from a Hague or COA accredited agency (if international adoption) or licensed social worker (if domestic adoption) is eligible to apply.

Financial need, perseverance, and imminence of the adoption must be demonstrated.

*See “What are the Home Study Qualifications?” below

Does the number of children we already have impact your decision?

No. The number of biological children or adopted children in the home does not impact eligibility.

What is the range of grants awarded by The Gift of Adoption Fund?

Adoption assistance grants range from $1,000 to $15,000 while the average grant award is $4,000.

What constitutes a “complete” application packet?

In order for Gift of Adoption to make a decision regarding your application, you will need to submit each of the following items:

  • Completed GOA Grant Application
  • Copy of your most recent tax return
  • Copy of recent ( two months) check stub for all reported income earners. Please note if you are self-employed you must provide the last two months of your business/personal bank account statements to show proof of income.
  • Copy of your approved and current home study* [Note: If your state laws prevent your home study from being released to you or a third party (e.g. Colorado), you must provide a statement signed by your agency confirming that you have a successful home study on file and that you have been approved to adopt the child with whom you are matched.]
  • Two (2) letters of reference. most applicants will make copies of the letters of reference that were used to obtain their home study
  • Check or Money Order payable to Gift of Adoption Fund in the amount of $50. The non-refundable one-time application fee is required to apply for a grant; it entitles you to submit your case for review up to three times (qualification requirements apply for all three submissions).

*See “What are the Home Study Qualifications?” below

How many times can I submit my application and case to the Review Committee?

You can submit your case for review up to three times. Qualification requirements apply for each of the three submissions. Please note the Grant Selection Committee will not review your application until you have a Birthmother match or Child referral.

You will pay the $50 application processing fee once, it will cover the one or two additional review requests. Materials must be up-to-date for each submission. Please note your grant application is valid for 18 months only. Once your application has expired, you will must start over as if you are a new applicant (including submitting the application processing fee of $50)

What types of adoptions does Gift of Adoption support?

The Gift of Adoption Fund awards grants to support domestic and international adoptions. International adoptions must be facilitated by a COA accredited agency.

What is The Hague Adoption Convention?

Also known as the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-Operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption, the Hague Adoption Convention protects children and their families against the risks of unregulated adoptions abroad, and ensures that
intercountry adoptions are in the best interests of children.

The Hague Convention also serves to prevent the abduction, sale of, or traffic in children.

More information can be found at the U.S. Department of State’s Hague Convention.

Which countries are members of the Hague Adoption Convention?

A complete and current list of Hague member countries is available at the U.S. Department of State’s Hague Convention website.

Where can I learn more about the Hague Adoption Convention?

You can learn more by visiting the U.S. Department of State’s Hague Convention website.

How often are adoption assistance grants awarded?

The Grant Selection Committee reviews completed applications and awards grants monthly.

Will my application be reviewed in the month it is submitted?

Every effort will be made to present your application to the committee at the time most favorable for your particular situation. However, this may not be the month in which your application is received.

Generally, factors impacting when your application is reviewed include:

  • The status of your child referral or birthmom match
  • Estimated travel and placement timeframe
  • Extent of remaining need

Other factors not noted here may also impact when your application is reviewed. You will be notified via email when your application will be presented to the committee and, at that time, be asked to provide any needed updates.

What factors does the Grant Selection Committee consider when reviewing applications?

The Grant Selection Committee evaluates a number of factors when considering an application including:

  • The qualifications of the applicant: U.S. citizen with an approved home study from a licensed agency adopting domestically or internationally from COA accredited agency. Utilizing a COA accredited agency assures adherence to the Hague Convention on Adoption standards.
  • The imminence of the adoption. Although qualified applicants are invited to apply anytime after the successful completion of a home study, the committee will not typically review applications until a match or referral has been accepted and the adoption is expected to happen within six months.Gift of Adoption may contact your agency to confirm and better understand your estimated adoption wait time.
  • The financial needs of the applicant. The committee will consider the annual household income, monthly income, expenses, assets, and debts when making its decisions.While there are no firm measures related to these items, the committee does look to see that there is an identifiable financial need and that the applicants have been fiscally responsible and good stewards of their available resources.
  • The perseverance shown by the applicant to complete the adoption.Gift of Adoption does not fund full adoptions. Therefore, the committee looks to see that applicants have demonstrated perseverance and success in funding the adoption on their own through their own fundraising efforts, sacrifice, and use of available assets and resources.
  • The child, (children, if multiple adoptions) and applicant’s compelling story. 

    Additionally, the committee considers the unique and compelling situation of each applicant and, primarily, the child (or children) they are adopting.

What are Gift of Adoption’s funding priorities?

While not solely limited to these categories, Gift of Adoption’s greatest priorities encompass:

For domestic adoptions, the priority is to award grants that:

  • Help keep children from entering the foster care system.
  • Unite biological siblings or prevent them from being separated.

For international adoptions, the priority is to award grants that:

  • Unite or preserve biological siblings.
  • Prevent a child from ‘aging-out’ of the orphanage or foster care system.
  • Prevent special needs children from becoming institutionalized.
  • Facilitate the placement of a child with a life-threatening medical condition who will not receive proper care until adopted.

Gift of Adoption does not award grants to assist with

  • Finalized adoptions
  • Embryo adoptions

When is the best time to apply?

You are invited to apply anytime after successfully completing your home study.
Remember however, your application may not be reviewed in the month it is received.

So, because the adoption process can take surprising turns, it’s a good idea to get your application on file with us in case a match or referral happens sooner than expected.

What if something changes after I send in my application?

If something changes after you submit your application, you will be given the opportunity to provide updated information before your application is reviewed. If your updated information is urgent in nature, you can email those changes to grants@giftofadoption.org.

In particular, please notify the organization with updates related to:

  • Your contact information
  • The status of your child referral and/or birthmom match
  • Estimated travel times
  • Changes in your financial situation
  • Adoption costs and amounts paid
  • Other grants received.

Additionally, The Gift of Adoption staff may email you to inquire about any updates on behalf of the Grant Selection Committee. Please respond to these emails as quickly as possible to ensure we have the most current information to review.

Can a grant ever be revoked or reduced?

If a grant is awarded to you based on information that is out of date, the grant award may be revoked or reduced based on the new information.

It is your responsibility to make sure our staff has your most current contact information.

The Gift of Adoption Fund may work directly with your agency to confirm information needed to finalize its decisions.


Is there a limit on the number of times I can apply for a grant?

Applications remain active for 18 months. After 18 months you will receive an email informing you that your application has expired. Applicants may apply up to three times per adoption.

Are there time limits for using a Gift of Adoption grant?

Yes, a Gift of Adoption grant must be disbursed within 18 months of the date awarded. If the grant is not disbursed, it will be revoked.

Is it ever too late to apply for a Gift of Adoption grant?

Do not apply if your adoption has been finalized or if all of your adoption expenses have been paid.
We provide the last bit of help needed to bring a child home and we are not able to reimburse for adoption expenses that have been paid or for adoption that have been completed.

Who sees the information submitted in my application packet?

Information provided in your application is confidential and seen only by The Gift of Adoption staff and volunteers who serve on the Grant Selection Committee.

Your social security number is not needed in order to evaluate your application. Please redact (black out) your social security number on any documents you submit as part of your application packet (tax return, home study, etc).

The Gift of Adoption Fund respects your privacy; information you provide is used for no other purpose than the consideration of a grant application.

If you are awarded a grant, Gift of Adoption may request to use some aspects of your adoption story in marketing and promotional materials. Your permission will be requested prior to use and use will be governed by the Publicity Authorization Form and Supplemental publicity Authorization Form.

Will the material I submit to Gift of Adoption be returned to me?

No. All materials become the property of Gift of Adoption and will not be returned to applicants.

Does the organization fully fund adoptions?

No. The Gift of Adoption Fund provides the last bit of funding needed to bring a child home.

What are the home study qualifications?

You must have an approved and current home study* from a licensed and accredited adoption agency or social worker before beginning the application process. [Note: If your state laws prevent your home study from being released to you or a third party (e.g. Colorado), you must provide a statement signed by your agency confirming that you have a successful home study on file and that you have been approved to adopt the child with whom you are matched.]

*If a home study is not required for your adoption (relative/kinship adoption) or if you are pursuing a domestic adoption of a specific child over the age of one (typically a former foster child or a subsequent adoption), you may still apply without a home study. Click here for more information.

Where can I find an adoption assistance grant application?

You can download an adoption grant application from the How to Apply section of this site.

How quickly will I be notified of the decision on my grant application?

Once a decision about your grant application is made, you will be notified of the outcome via email within 48 hours of the Grant Selection Committee meeting. Please make sure @giftofadoption.org is in your safe senders list so that email communications from people in our organization do not end up in your spam folder.

We are excited to embark on this adoption journey with you!