Local Adoption Agencies
- A Gift of Hope Adoptions
303 North Stadium Blvd., Suite 200, Columbia, MO, 65203. (573) 356-0025
- Adoption Solutions, Inc.
612 Washington Street, Jefferson City, MO 65101. (573) 632-6646
- Lutheran Family & Children’s Services
307 Locust St., Columbia, MO 65201. (573) 815-9955
- Missouri Department of Social Services Children’s Division
212 Portland Avenue, Columbia, MO 65201. (573) 441-5952
National and International Agencies
Adopting.org maintains information on the many different aspects of domestic and international adoption and is hosted by adoption professionals and volunteers.
- Child Welfare Information Gateway
Maintains a searchable National Foster Care & Adoption Directory which provides adoption and foster care resources listed by state.
- Intercountry Adoption
This site provides information on the adoption process, specific country information, visas and general adoption resources.
Post Adoption Support
- The Central Missouri Foster Care and Adoption Association
Not-for-profit agency that educates, supports and advocates for foster and adoptive children, youth and families in central Missouri by offering services and partnering with community and governmental agencies to develop healthy and self-sufficient individuals and families. Reach them by phone here: (573) 476-6039
- Columbia Foster and Adoption Project
The Columbia Foster and Adoption Project is a not-for-profit group whose mission is to support and equip families in the Columbia, MO area through the various stages of adoption and foster care. They offer support groups for families involved in adoption and foster care, education and awareness activities and maintain a website with additional resources and adoption information. Reach them by email here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Financial and Legal Resources
- Adoption Subsidy Guide
The Adoption Subsidy Guide was created by the North American Council on Adoptable Children to educate parents and professionals on Title IV-E Adoption Assistance in the United States.
- State Adoption Subsidy Profiles
The state adoption subsidy profiles allows you to learn about the state’s adoption assistance program, including which children and families are eligible, what benefits are provided, how the program is funded, and more.
- A Child Waits Foundation
A financial resource for those seeking international adoption loans. Provides low interest loans for families who have exhausted other financial options and could not proceed with their adoption without help.
- The Gift of Adoption Fund
Gift of Adoption Fund’s mission is “to fill the void that separates child from family – through adoption assistance grants that give vulnerable children a permanent home and the chance to thrive.”
- Child Welfare Information Gateway
A service of the Children’s Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this organization provides access to print and electronic publications, websites, databases and online learning tools for improving child welfare practice.
- State of Missouri Adoption Links
The State of Missouri maintains a website with information about adoption and official government adoption forms.
Parenting Programs and Event Flyers
- Boone County Early Childhood Coalition
- Bringing Up Boone Babies
- Centralia Lend & Learn
- Central Missouri Down Syndrome Family Network
- First Chance for Children
- Great Circle Home Visiting Program
- Healthy Families Home Visiting Program
- Jumpstart Free Kindergarten Readiness Program
- La Leche League
- Missouri Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Caregiver Support Group
- Mothers of Children With Autism
- My Life Clinic
- ParentLink Ages & Stages Child Developmental Screening
- PAT: Free Screening
- ParentLink WarmLine
- Rainbow House: Crisis Care
- Ready for Life classes
- Tiger Tot Mommies
Parenting Resources Guide
See also: Homeschooling
Parent Education Flyers
- Baby U
First Chance for Children’s home visitation program is designed to help families strengthen protective factors that help them deal with the issues involving raising children.
- Boone County Early Childhood Coalition (BCECC)
BCECC is a coalition of educators and practitioners in Boone County who value and recognize the importance of supporting the social emotional wellness of children, with the emphasis on early childhood. They offer the positive parenting program, Triple P and are a hub for the Survey of Wellbeing of Young Children (SWYC).
- First Steps
Missouri First Steps is an Early Intervention program to support families who have a child from birth to age 3 who has delayed development or diagnosed conditions that are associated with developmental disabilities.
- Lend and Learn
Offers a safe environment for families and children to explore toys to enhance motor and cognitive skills.
- Missouri Department of Health: Healthy Children
Links and resources to Missouri Department of Health and Human Services programs for children. Includes information on well child exams and MO HealthNet.
Provides problem solving support, referrals and resources for families such as WarmLine for direct access to family strengthening information and support, and the Kinship Navigator Line for relative/kin caregivers, grandparents, and foster parents who need help with caregiving questions.
- Parents as Teachers
This program promotes parents as the child’s first teacher, and supports vary by school district. Many include home visits, screenings, educational programs and resource centers. Check your school district to learn more about opportunities to support your child’s development.
- SOAR – System Offering Actions for Resilience in Early Childhood
Provides services to promote the social-emotional wellness of children ages 0-8 and their families in Boone County. SOAR’s focus is on early child wellness, universal developmental screening, information/referral, workforce development and treatment services.
Library Programs and Resources from DBRL
- Books Every Child Should Know
Library staff maintains the following lists of excellent age- and reading level-appropriate books for your young reader.
- Children’s Programs at the Library
- DBRL’s Educational Resources Guide
A catalog of learning tools from your library, including virtual programs, physical and digital collections, databases and free digital courses.
- Growing a School-Ready Child
Learn about Kindergarten-readiness criteria for your young child.
- Little Red Reading Bags
Little Red Reading Bags are for parents, grandparents, child care providers or anyone who cares for young children. The bags contain books, DVDs, music CDs, and toys on 12 different themes, along with a skill sheet with activities to support children’s early literacy skills.
- Parent Packs
For expectant or brand-new parents, these Parent Pack kits include books about pregnancy and parenting, a yoga DVD and a set of pamphlets for you to keep. The pamphlets include a list of books for children about new siblings, information on breast-feeding, child safety and getting assistance from social service agencies. Disponible en español también. Parent Packs are made possible by a generous donation from the Assistance League of Mid-Missouri.
- Play as Learning (PAL) Kits
PAL kits help parents and children explore learning in a play-like atmosphere. PAL kits contain books, toys and music or a video for young children ages birth-2 years.
- Community Health Promotion & Education Division of Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services
Health and wellness education for the community. Offers programs like Fit-Tastic and the Teen Outreach Program.
- Health Insurance Marketplace
Provides information for individuals and families about getting health insurance. Insurance applications can be completed online.
- Maternal Mental Health Program
Part of Lutheran Children’s and Family Services, this program provides therapy sessions to help mothers (living in Boone County) battle depression, as well as therapy and support for their children and case management to help identify community resources and services to promote family well-being.
- Missouri HealthNet for Children
Missouri’s health care program for children. Get information on eligibility, providers, application materials and more.
- Missouri HealthNet for Pregnant Women and Newborns
Missouri’s health care program for pregnant women and newborns. Get information on eligibility, providers, application materials and more.
- My Life Clinic
Offers free professional, confidential pregnancy medical services, including pregnancy testing and ultrasound. Services are offered without restrictions regardless of age, marital status, race, religion, residency or income. Parenting and Moms Support Group classes are also offered. Call 573-874-3561 to schedule an initial visit with a client specialist. Walk-in appointments are also available.
- Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC)
A supplemental nutrition and health program based on income. Offered to pregnant women, new mothers and children up to age five.
General Assistance for Parents and Caregivers
- Brighter Beginnings Home Visiting Collaborative
A Boone county organization that supports families by helping connect them with local resources specific to their situation.
- Call 211
A 24 hour, 7 day a week telephone resource line that connects callers to trained resource specialists. Specialists can provide referrals for seniors, disabled persons, children and families, to physical or mental health services and job resources. Referrals are free and confidential. Multilingual specialists are available.
- Childcare Aware of Missouri
Provides childcare referrals, training coordination and accreditation services for parents, families and childcare providers.
- Central Missouri Community Action (CMCA)
Empowers individuals and families to achieve self-reliance through programs designed to fight poverty, including Head Start, employment & training programs, foster grandparents and family support services. Their online resource guide covers services available in eight Missouri counties.
- Columbia Public Schools Early Childhood Education Center
Early childhood special education program for children ages 3 to 5. Program addresses educational development and social development needs of children.
- Down Syndrome Innovations – Central Missouri
Central Missouri Down syndrome Family Network is a support group for families that have babies or small children, teens or adults who are “enlightened by an extra 21st chromosome.”
- FACE – Family Access Center of Excellence
Provides a coordinated, transparent and collaborative approach to improving access to quality social, emotional and behavioral health services for families with children (aged 0-19). Includes supportive case-management and community-based referrals.
- Family Facets and the Children’s Division (formerly known as DFS)
Provides two programs in Boone and Callaway counties for families – Intensive In-home Services (IIS) and Intensive Family Reunification Services (IFRS). IIS is a program that seeks to keep children safely in their homes with their primary caretaker(s) through helping families gain the skills, information and resources they may need to function successfully. IFRS is a program that helps families successfully reintegrate their children back into their homes after a period of out-of-home placement. Referrals to either of these two programs may be made at any time by calling 573-886-7422.
- Family Impact Center
Provides support and education services to Columbia families in the areas of financial literacy, mental health, life skills, and relationship building. This organization also provides school readiness programs and summer camps for youth.
- First Chance for Children
Delivers canvas “Baby Bags” to low-income mothers that give birth in the two Columbia hospitals. The bag contains books, safety items, a sleeper and a notebook containing information about local resources for new mothers.
An informal group for grandparents raising their grandchildren. Guest speakers have addressed grandparent-grandchild relations, maintaining health, handling stress, holiday activities with grandchildren and legal issues.
- Healthy Families Program
Provides car seats, cribs, clothing, other supplies and referral services to families expecting a baby.
- La Leche League
Provides help and support to breastfeeding women through mother-to-mother support and education.
A statewide training and information center serving parents of children with all disabilities through the use of free training workshops and one-on-one technical assistance sessions. MPACT assists parents in their efforts to effectively advocate for their children’s educational rights and services. 1-800-743-7634
- The Nurturing Network
The Nurturing Network, provided by Lutheran Family and Children’s Services of Mid-Missouri, is an evidence-based curriculum that teaches parents the importance of nurturing themselves in an effort to better nurture their children. Parents work one-on-one with a social worker, and can be connected as needed with services for alternative housing options, job training and placement, and individual counseling. Open to parents who have at least one child age five or younger in the home. Funded by the Boone County Children’s Service Fund; there is no cost to parents. Please call Erin Maynard, LMSW at 573-815-9955 for a referral.
- Rainbow House
Provides emergency shelter services to children and families in Boone and surrounding counties who are in crisis. Their mission is keeping children safe and supporting families through prevention, assessment and intervention in child abuse and neglect cases.
- Safe Cribs
Provides a safe crib and basic necessities for the first year of life along with information families need to safely put their child to bed and deal with sleep-related issues.
- Safe Kids Columbia
Dedicated to eliminating unintentional injury and death to children under the age of 19 in Audrain, Boone, Callaway, Cooper, Cole and Howard Counties. Safe Kids Columbia provides information on passenger safety, water safety, bike/pedestrian safety, firearm safety, home/fire safety and playground/sports injury prevention. For more information on local events call 573-771-9216.
A toll-free information and referral line for Missouri residents that offers a wide range of guidance on programs including alcohol and drug treatment, dental clinics, mental health treatment and prenatal referrals. 1-800-TEL-LINK or 1-800-835-5465.
- Voluntary Action Center
Provides several programs and resources for families such as diapers, formula, hygiene kits and a Christmas program providing low-income families with food and gifts for the holidays. The VAC can help secure birth certificates for persons born in Missouri, youth enrichment fund of $50.00 per child per year for sport, scholastic, etc. types of activities and various other services. Call 573-874-2273 for information. Please note that due to Covid-19, VAC is still providing services by no-contact appointments only. All intake processes are handled over the phone. A new phone tree is in place so it is easier to get through to the services team. If families are needing VAC services, they should press 2 at the first prompt and then 1 at the second prompt. If no one answers, VAC staff are on the phone with others and the caller should call back. Caseworkers may call on behalf of those they serve as well to complete intake and schedule appointments. VAC has a surplus of things donated currently, including cleaning supplies, hygiene supplies, diapers and food.