Social Services
   
Adoption
   
  There are more than 800 children in the guardianship of the State of Tennessee. They reside in foster homes, group homes or other residential settings. They are waiting for families to offer them a permanent home. Some biological parents may make the adoption plan for their child; other children's parental rights have been terminated due to abuse, neglect of the inability to provide adequate care. Some of the children have extra physical, emotional or educational needs. Most children range from early school age to teenage years; some have one or more siblings and there are all ages of African-American and mixed race children waiting for an adoptive family. Many of these children have been waiting for years for someone to want them, show them the love they need and deserve, and give them a sense of belonging.
 
  To learn more about waiting children and how to become an adoptive parent in Tennessee, visit: http://tennessee.gov/youth/adoption/.
 
Child Protective Services
 
  The Department of Children's Services responds to over 37,000 reports of child abuse and neglect a year. Every day, more than 100 children are reprted abused or neglected in Tennessee.
 
  The Child Protective Services division strives to protect children (under the age of 18 years) whose lives or health are seriously jeopardized because of abusive acts or negligence. This division also supports the preservation of families.
 
  To learn more, visit; http://tennessee.gov/youth/cps/index.htm
 
Foster Care
   
  Children who live in families that are unable or unwilling to care for them need the strength of a stable and secure environment. The Department of Children's Services is responsible for providing temporary care of foster care for many of these children. The Department of Children's Services recruits foster families who provide safe and supportive homes in which the children's emotional, physical, and social needs can be met.
   
  Foster care is a temporary service until the family and, in some cases, the child can address the problems which made placement necessary. When parents cannot or will not make their home safe for the child's return, other permanent options are sought, including adoption, or independent living for older youth.
   
  For more information on Foster Care, please visit; http://tennessee.gov/youth/foster/index.htm