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Algoma Children's Aid Society Profile on Adoption Assistance

Updated June 2008

Agency Contact Person

Heather MacLachlan
191 Northern Avenue East
Sault Ste. Marie, ON P6B 4H8
Phone: 705-949-0162 ext. 259
Fax: 705-949-4747

NACAC Representative (Parent/Volunteer)

Currently, there is no Ontario Representative. If you or someone you know would like to volunteer to help families learn more about adoption assistance, please call Jeanette Wiedemeier Bower at NACAC, 651-644-3036 or 800-470-6665.

Adoption assistance may be available for children with special needs. Often, assistance is provided to encourage the adoption of special needs children and remove the financial disincentives to adoption for the families. If you have questions, please call the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) at 651-644-3036 or our subsidy help line at 800-470-6665, or e-mail us at

Ontario’s Adoption Resources on the Web:

Ontario’s Ministry of Children and Youth Services

Federal and Ontario Provincial Nonrefundable Tax Credits

The Adoption Council of Ontario

Algoma Children’s Aid Society web information:

1. Algoma CAS’s legal definition of special needs is as follows:

Special needs are based on the individual child’s emotional, social, cognitive, and physical needs.

2. If available, the standard adoption assistance rate in Algoma CAS is:

This is determined on a per service basis.

3. Specialized rates, if available, are based on the extraordinary needs of the child, and/or the additional parenting skill needed to raise the child. If Algoma CAS offers special allowances over and above the standard rate, the criteria used to define the higher rates are as follows:


4. In addition to monthly payments, what sort of post-adoption services (respite, counseling, residential treatment, parent training, etc.) are provided? When available, are these services formally specified in the adoption assistance agreement in Algoma CAS?

All post adoption services that would be utilized with a subsidy would be formalized in an agreement. The subsidy would be determined on a case-by-case basis and could be specific to a certain intervention. This would be determine by the adoptive family’s income and funding that would be available in the community or covered by the family employment benefits.

5. What medical or dental services are available in Algoma CAS?

Same as question # 4.

6. When my child turns 18, which benefits, if any, are available to our family?


7. Do relatives adopting under the program receive the same benefits as non-relatives?

Yes, based on the child’s needs.

8. Do children adopted from private agencies in Algoma CAS receive the same subsidies as those children adopted from public agencies?


Programmatic Procedures

9. When do subsidy payments begin?

This would depend on the specific situation, but normally before finalization.

10. Will Algoma CAS consider my family income to determine my child's benefit package?


11. Are prospective adoptive families routinely notified of all benefits available to them in Algoma CAS?

This would depend on the needs of the child.

12. Who sets the assistance rates and how are they established?

The assistance is determined by the individual Society.

13. Who makes the final determination of a child's eligibility in Algoma CAS? What roles, if any, do workers and administrators at the agency or regional level play in eligibility determination and/or assistance negotiation?

The Adoption Coordinator, the Adoption Supervisor and the Director of Residential Resources are all involved in this determination.

14. Once a child is determined eligible for assistance, is there any requirement to look for an adoptive family who will accept a placement without assistance?

This would depend on the specific situation.

15. Once eligibility is established, how and by whom are assistance agreements negotiated in Algoma CAS?

Same as question number 13.

16. A child's adoption assistance agreement may be periodically reviewed by the agency. What is the typical process used in Algoma CAS?

Agreements would be reviewed annually.

17. Can adoption assistance agreements be modified if requested by adoptive parents?

Yes. This would depend on the needs of the child.

18. A deferred or nil agreement is one in which the initial monthly assistance payment is $0. If a child's needs are listed as high risk and symptoms later manifest, the payment is renegotiated. Are deferred agreements offered in Algoma CAS?

Subsidies could be based on anticipated needs of the child.

19. What are the exact steps a family must go through to access the appeal process in Algoma CAS?

There is an internal complaint process to which the family would refer.

20. Families may request assistance after the finalization of an adoption under certain circumstances. Below is the process by which families access adoption benefits after finalization.

The adoptive family would contact the Adoption Department but this would be a rare situation and only offered in extreme cases.

System Operation And Program Funding

21. How is the adoption assistance program operated and funded in Algoma CAS?


22. Below are other programs that may delineate Algoma CAS's adoption assistance program from others around the province or country.



North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC)
970 Raymond Avenue, Suite 106
St. Paul, MN 55114
phone: 651-644-3036
fax: 651-644-9848