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Washington County adoption trends changing

Adoption trends in Washington County show increased permanency with relatives and more children finding their birth parents through social media.

In 2012, the county finalized seven adoptions with five placed in a relative's home and two with unrelated parents, according to numbers released by the county last week.

The county also worked with 30 families to obtain stepparent adoptions.

"International adoption has decreased dramatically," said children's services supervisor Lisa Hanson. "Public welfare and child welfare are the majority."

The numbers reflect adoptions serviced through the county's foster care program and not private agencies.

Trends also show that 99 percent of children know they're adopted.

"A way different trend than my mom's generation who kept it secret," she said.

In a workshop meeting with the Washington County Board of Commissioners Tuesday, July 2, Hanson added that trends continue to show open adoption and easy access to information through social networks that have also made it easier to find birth parents.

"We don't have a lot of kids searching for their parents," she said.

Washington County had a total of 201 children in foster care last year with 88 males and 113 females. There were also 42 placement requests and 78 emergency placement requests.

County social workers say they're constantly recruiting for providers, especially for respite requests that require weekend care.

Riham Feshir
Riham Feshir is a reporter and photographer for the Woodbury Bulletin. Her coverage includes Woodbury City Hall, Washington County Board of Commissioners and business news.  Follow Riham on Twitter @RihamFeshir for the latest updates.