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Difference between Adoption and Fostering

Difference between Adoption and Fostering

When you’re considering becoming a parent, you might be wondering about the difference between adoption and fostering. Both have their own unique benefits, but there are some key differences that might help you decide which is right for your family. Let’s take a closer look at each one.

What is Adoption?

Adoption is a legal process whereby a person assumes the parenting of another, usually a child, from that person’s biological or legal parent or parents. Adoptive parents may be of the same or opposite sex as the biological parents.

  • An adoption order, granted by a court, will transfer parental responsibility to the adoptive parents and permanently severs the relationship between the child and his or her birth family, including the child’s right to inherit from them.
  • Although adoption is often considered to be a wonderful way to create or expand a family, it is not without its challenges. Adopted children may struggle with feelings of loss and abandonment, and they may also have difficulty forming attachments.
  • Adoptive parents need to be prepared to provide love and support as their children adjust to their new families. Adoption can be a rewarding experience for all involved, but it is important to understand the potential challenges before making the decision to adopt.

What is Fostering?

  • Fostering is the process of providing care for a child who is not able to live with their birth family. This can be for a variety of reasons, such as drug abuse, mental illness, poverty, or domestic violence.
  • Fostering provides a stable and loving home for children who need it, and can make a huge difference in their lives. Fosterers go through an assessment process to make sure they are able to provide the best possible care for the child.
  • This includes safety checks, background checks, and training. Fosterers receive a stipend to help cover the costs of caring for the child, and also receive support from social workers. Fostering can be a challenging but rewarding experience and makes a real difference in the lives of children in need.

Difference between Adoption and Fostering

Adoption and fostering are two different ways of providing a permanent or temporary home for children who are not able to live with their birth families.

  • Adoption is a legal process whereby children become the legal responsibility of their adoptive parents and have the same rights and status as if they were born into the family.
  • Fostering, on the other hand, is an arrangement whereby children are placed with foster carers by the government or a social service agency.
  • Foster carers do not have legal responsibility for the child but provide them with a safe and nurturing home environment until they are able to be reunited with their birth family or, if that is not possible, adopted.

Adoption and fostering provide children with a loving and stable home environment, which is essential for their physical, emotional, and social development.


The main distinction is that when you adopt a child, they become your legal son or daughter. With fostering, the child remains under the care of their birth parents or guardians, but you are granted temporary custody with the goal of returning them to their family as soon as possible. There are many different types of adoptions, including international adoptions, stepparent adoptions, and relative adoptions. Fostering can also take on different forms depending on the situation – for example, emergency foster care is when a child needs a home immediately due to neglect or abuse.

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