Adoptions From the HeartHot
I gave my daughter up for adoption in Lancaster office 21 years ago. When I had second thoughts and asked for my daughter back the social worker said to me "Your daughter could have been a scientist". Well I felt so horrible and decided to go through with the adoption. Which I totally regreted. It is an open adoption. Today my daughter is 21 and ahe is a heroin addict, weighing well over 250 lbs. Her adoptive father gives her vicodin and is an alchholic. The adoptive mother is an enabler, obviously. PLEASE DO NOT USE THIS AGENCY, AS THEY DO NOT DO PROPER BACKGROUND CHECKS!!!! I called the adoption agency and reported this to a aocial worker. She said I could sit down with the adopted family (enabler n alchholic). Now, 4 days later she does not pick up the phone or return my calls! I have called over six times.
100% Recommend - 2 Successful adoptions :)
My husband and I adopted our son in 2012 and our daughter in 2014. Both were domestic adoptions, VA and DE. We worked mostly with Ashley at the Wynnewood, PA office. We could not be happier with our experience. We were in the book 8 months before we were chosen in our son's adoption and were in just about 1 year in our daughter's adoption. Our emails and questions were always answered promptly. Working with Adoptions From The Heart was the best decision my husband and I ever made.
A great agency with a heart for the special ones
My husband and I have adopted five times. Four of the homestudies were done by Adoptions from the Heart Pittsburgh office. Their homestudies were done in a very timely manner and were top notch.
We received three placements of special needs infants from AFTH, and working with the Pittsburgh office, were able to apply and receive subsidy for the last two due to their medical needs. They fought for us to make sure our precious ones had this very important item, providing a medical card for them until they turn 18 years old.
One of our placements was a special needs child with another agency, but once again AFTH Pittsburgh came through for us with the homestudy and postplacement visits!!
Debbie from this office is amazing to work with and works very hard to find the best family for the child. She is extremely supportive of the adoptive parents even once the adoption is finalized!!
Would we use them again? YOU BET !!
Maxine and her horrible off
Maxine and her horrible off spring Heidi are the most vile people on the planet. Beware of who you are dealing with crazy and mean.
8 Adoptions=Highly Recommending AFTH
AFTH Pittsburgh office has been instrumental in building our family over the past 13 years. Without their professional services, and amazing support, we wouldn't have the 8 beautiful children who call us Mom and Dad.
In addition to our two biological children, we were blessed with four children who came to us as babies through international adoptions, 3 who came through domestic newborn placements, and a 2 yr. old whose prior adoption had been disrupted. In every case, Debbie was always incredible at providing a home study, post placement visit, phone calls, etc. She is a wealth of information and knowledge. She always had our home studies completed in very little time, and communicated with the placement agencies and lawyers whenever needed. We have dealt with many different placing agencies and lawyers through the years, and we have often been disappointed...but never with the AFTH Pittsburgh office! We trust them wholeheartedly, and continue to refer people to them! It is also worth noting that we found their fees very competitive, and in many cases lower than most other agencies! We also found the time frames for a completed home study to be much shorter!
We completed a domestic newborn adoption through AFTH two years ago. From beginning to end, Katie, Debbie and Joan walked us through every step. Even when we experienced major concerns with our daughter's placement, they went above and beyond to ensure that everything worked out. In the end it did, thanks to their support.
Joan is a complete angel! She is so gifted in working with birth parents! She connects with them, and is a steady support and counsel to them. Katie manages the office with professionalism, and a true heart for all involved with the adoption process. She is a constant voice of encouragement and wisdom. Debbie is an experienced social worker, who has impressed us in every step of our adoption journeys, from homestudy to post placement visits to finalization.
Debbie, Katie and Joan each hold a special place in our family. We highly recommend the AFTH Pittsburgh office!
My wife and I worked with the Pittsburgh office and they are absolutely wonderful! We definitely appreciate their honest approach to adoption in giving us realistic expectations as well as transparency with regards to the cost of adoption. Our case worker Laurie kept us on track throughout the process. Whenever it looked like we were struggling or we felt that the wait was too long for us to bear she provided the right words to say at the time and the encouragement we needed. This agency and especially the Pittsburgh office really knows what they are doing when it comes to adoption. Today my wife and I are the proud parents of a newborn baby girl whom we've waited all our lives to receive. Thank you AFTH Pittsburgh office for helping to make our dreams come true!!
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life" - Proverbs 13:12
adoption from the heartless
From the birth mothers side of the coin, this agency makes lofty promises as well, only to drop you like a bad habit once they have completed their sale. Every new mother experiences post partum depression, understandably it is often far more sever with mothers who give the baby up. My daughter was promise post baby counseling, but was given the bums rush once these corrupt people had what they wanted. I would like to see an investigation of the practices. I was just informed of all this by my ex wife. I intend to make things hot for these lying, unscrupulous baby mongers.
Please, if you are doing the right and difficult thing, choosing life over abortion. Be sure to get everything you need in writing. It will be hard for you, you will need counseling and a lot of support. God bless all the young ladies making this choice, and God bless all the wonderful parents who are making a loving home for these children.
Adoptions from the Heart is excellent
My husband and I are waiting to adopt domestically and are using Adoptions from the Heart. We chose them because we really liked their ethics and felt that they treat everyone in the adoption triad with care and respect. We have found them to be very supportive and they have told us multiple times that we can call them as often as we need or want to during the waiting stage. We looked at some agencies that said please don't call us during the wait and thought that was outrageous. We liked that expectant parents considering placing a child get to see as many potential adoptive parent profiles as they wish that match their specific conditions. In other words, birth parents get the chance to make the choice of who they want to have parent their child without being restricted to a specific number of longest waiting families by the agency. We liked this policy and felt that it showed care and respect for the birthparents. Also liked that adoptive parents, birth parents and kids placed through the agency have lifetime support from the agency. So far AFTH has been upfront and direct with us about everything.
Where should I begin...........
Giving a one star rating for this horrendous agency is being generous. I am unable to post our ongoing negative experiences since they would identify us and because I would simply run out of room. I will start from the beginning. During our group meetings, there was VERY important info which was withheld (we learned later) over & over again...EVERY one of our group members had ongoing issues with AFTH (Wynnewood Office)-Maxine Chalker, the Founder & owner, is simply awful and unethical. A very respected adoption attorney described her as being a "miserable human being & very difficult to deal with"- The case workers (only one is an actual social worker) are dreadful- THey would send emails and shout (using caps...who does that???))- They are incredibly unprofessional and are anything but warm and fuzzy. There was little to no support at all and information/requirements would change constantly-THey would say one thing & do another-In other words, the agency did whatever they felt like doing-They take your money, know that you "need" them and don't care about you at all- Additionally, paperwork was lost frequently (not just ours) - Despite this being the agencies fault, they would "accuse" people of not submitting it! Really? This happened multiple times to several people in our group. I know that 2 families in our group have contemplated contacting an attorney (for valid reasons!!!)- A co-worker & his wife, in my husbands firm, left AFTH to go elsewhere-THis was after a disruption and they walked away leaving the $$$ behind-THis is how disgusted they were w/ the agency! Another couple who I met adopted 2 children but states that she would never recommend using them. Her own sister (who is adopting) is pursuing other options. Another couple that we met recently, decided against using them after the info session in Wynnewood-She felt that too much info was being left unanswered- I literally could go on for hours...........THis is a terrible agency being run by terrible people- How sad that an adoption agency is being run this way! There are wonderful agencies around the Country and I would highly suggest choosing one with not only a stellar rep, but one with pleasant, authentic, professionally trained and emotionally supportive people.
Domestic adoption with AFTH - wonderful experience
We had a really wonderful experience with Adoptions from the Heart's Gladwynne and Allentown, PA, and Cherry Hill, NJ, offices. AFTH started out as just our home study agency, as we were originally planning to do an international adoption with an agency located out of state. However, we eventually decided to switch to a domestic adoption and at that point we moved our entire process to AFTH. Our adoption of our son was finalized in October, 2011.
We had some bumps in the road -- mainly, before our son came to us we had to return a newborn who had been placed with us a week earlier because the birth mother changed her mind. That was extremely difficult, but we felt we had been very well prepared for the possibility by AFTH and we felt well supported through the whole process.
Our experience has been that the AFTH staff really cares about us, our child, and our child's birth mother, and that staff members at various offices work together extremely well to support everyone involved. We feel very good about the way his birth mother (a teenager) was treated throughout the process, and that is part of what made our adoption such an amazing and positive experience. AFTH has done a wonderful job from start to finish. I'd recommend them to anyone.
Wonderful Experience with Adoptions From The Heart
We worked with Adoptions From The Heart for a domestic adoption in 2010. We found them to be extremely professional and supportive. We worked mostly with Ashley K as our social worker in the Wynnewood office and we also worked with Michaelina. We can not say enough positive things about our experience with both of these phenomenal social workers and the staff at AFTH. They made this process comfortable and not scary or intimidating at all. They walked us through the process and all types of situations we could face and how they would be handled so we would be prepared for anything and everything. We always felt confident with them and supported by them. We started the process at the very end of April 2010, went through the paperwork and homestudy process and then entered the program officially in August. We brought home our baby girl in October 2010, so we were fortunate to not have a long wait at all. Ashley helped us with every question we had and she was there for guidance when we needed it. She answered our calls and emails promptly and thoroughly. The classes offered by AFTH were very informative and allowed us to connect with other adopting parents who could relate to what we were going through. We will be forever grateful to AFTH for creating our family, and we hope to use them again in the future.
Excellent Agency to Use
We used the Allentown office for both of our adoptions. All of the staff members were very knowledgable, considerate, and available to answer any questions that we had. They were also very supportive for us during rough times when we were very close to going thru a disruption with our 2nd son twice. I would recomend this agency to anyone and would use it again if we ever decided to adopt a 3rd child. We could never thank them enough for helping them complete our family!
Great experience (Placement August 2011)
I had a very positive experience with Adoptions From The Heart. I used the Cherry Hill, NJ office and was in the AA/Biracial program. When my social worker, Elaine, was assigned, she asked what were my expectations. I told her I expected to have my questions, calls, emails etc. answered promptly. I explained that "promptly" didn't mean "immediately" but that I did expect a response in a reasonable timeframe. She exceeded my expectations.
My son came home in August 2011 (after only a 5 month wait) as an emergency placement. He's perfect for my family and I couldn't be happier. As a "bonus" I also became friends with another single mom who went through the process at the same time. She is also happy (her son is home also) and just today said she'd recommend the agency without reservation.
My adoption is not finalized but I will come back to update my review when it is. Best wishes to all who are searching for an agency. Adoption really is one of God's greatest gifts.
P.S. I rated 4 stars and not 5 because I'm "one of those people" who gives no survey a perfect score (smile)
We would seek other agencies next time around
Our experience was 2 years in the making, with lots of promises and very little information or follow-up. We would receive a call about questionable drugs/history for the birth mother and had to make a decision if we wanted our profile shown - and then never hear back from the agency, all the while wondering if she was still choosing or chose another couple. Several attempts were made to rectify this but further calls to us followed the same pattern.
Our placement was emergency and I have to agree with other posts, the information given at first was not complete or accurate. Only when we met the birth mom's SW did we get the complete story, accurate details (in writing!) and felt as though we were dealing with someone competent.
The reason I've dropped them to 2-star is the fee schedule, which was raised 3-times in 18 months - ever six months the rate went up $2,000 for the placement. We were exempt from other fee hikes since we already paid them thankfully. That is $6,000 in a recession. Mind you, Maxine's salary was $232,000 which is a bit high for a non-profit as we've researched other agencies which were larger (a bit further away) and the President/Executive Director took about half as much for services. Ok, everyone needs to make a living but our program rate went up 40% in 18 months!
Using GuideStar.org we find out that Maxine gave herself a nice raise, making $378,000 total compensation for the year. The 40% increase makes sense and now we know where our money went.
Mind you, if we had unlimited money we would still use another agency. We had a string of multiple bad SW assigned to us and the one we wanted was overworked but very good. We have a wonderful child and we wouldn't change that for the world however it was our understanding that the agency was started altruistically -- but apparently has morphed into a nepotistic money-maker. It's all about the money from the moment you get that phone call!!!
Avoid this agency like the plague!
I had an unfortunate experience with one of their so-called "emergency placements". While I understood that possible emergency placements were part of the contract, I did expect them to be professional enough to give me adequate information on the birthparents, before expecting me to hop a plane and travel to pick up a baby. At first the SW told me both bparents were in the military. Then she told me only the bmother was in the military. The bfather had left the military. Then I was told that the bmom had a baby that died @ a year old, but they could not tell me why. Even then, I was still considering making the trip. I told them I would need a little time to get there, and they were less than accomodating. I had to go immediately, cause the baby was about to be discharged, and since there was no time to get a certified check for the fees, to just bring my checkbook. Red Flag. I told them I would be unable to go, and that I couldn't leave my job for an unspecified amount of time. They responded with a threat to kick me out of the program if I didn't go. I didn't go, and they told me that they would be generous and alllow me to stay, but the next "one" I had to take. All they care about is getting their fee, and getting the baby off their hands. It's a business exchange. Avoid them.