Adoption agencies may provide pre-adoption education, counseling, homestudies, and post-adoption services.
There are two basic types of adoption agencies:
- Public agencies are usually supported by public funding, run by counties or states, and assist in the adoption of children in the foster care system.
- Private agencies are usually licensed by the state but run privately and can assist in most types of adoption.
Some agencies specialize in areas that may interest prospective parents. For example, agencies exist which focus on placement of international children. The same goes for bi-racial children, special needs children, or children of a particular ethnic group. Other agencies may be involved entirely in adoptions involving infants. Some adoption agencies are selective in the type of adoptive couples with whom they will work.