Md. Receives Over $170,000 in Adoption Incentive Award

BALTIMORE (October 13, 2010)—The Maryland Department of Human Resources received over $170,000 for improving its adoption and foster care programs. This award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is part of a $39 million bonus made to 38 states and Puerto Rico for increasing the number of children adopted from foster care.

"Maryland continues to see positive results for our children through our child welfare reform effort," said Governor O'Malley. "We have developed a proven track record of setting goals, measuring performance, and delivering results for our families."

This year's incentive award recipients completed more adoptions in 2009 than in the 2007 baseline year. States receive $4,000 for every child adopted beyond their best year's total, plus a payment of $8,000 for every child age 9 and older and $4,000 for every special needs child adopted above the respective baselines. Maryland's award was $173,603 for finalizing 770 adoptions in 2009.

"In the last three years, since DHR's Place Matters initiative was put in place, 8,760 Maryland children have found permanent homes through adoption, reunification, and guardianship," said DHR Interim Secretary Brian Wilbon.

Maryland's child welfare system has achieved 2,100 adoptions - including a 19.6 percent increase in three years - reunified 5,100 children with their families, and placed1, 500 children under guardianship with another family member.

These results have slashed the number of children in Maryland's foster care system by 20 percent, and reduced the number of children in group-homes by half.

Source: Maryland Department of Human Resources

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