Programs & Initiatives

For Children

Adoption Rhode Island offers a variety of programs and services in a variety of different areas for waiting children to help keep them hopeful, empower them to believe in themselves and to help us find them the forever family they so deserve. The links in this section will offer an overview of some of our current programs.

Adoption Services

Adoption Resources and Education

The Adoption Resources and Education program is a contract with the Rhode Island Department of Children, Youth and Families to provide a range of recruitment strategies to identify potential families for children in foster care, raise awareness about the needs of children in foster care and assist with matching children and families. Some of the strategies include general, child-focused, child-specific and targeted recruitment strategies, case mining and family search and engagement. Adoption and Permanency Specialists work with children to help prepare them for permanency and promote best practices in adoption. Children are referred to these services by DCYF.

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Tuesday’s Child

Tuesday’ Child is an award winning news segment featured on WJAR-Channel 10. Adoption Rhode Island partners with Channel 10 to create and produce features of children waiting to be adopted as well as stories about foster care and adoption. This partnership has provided enormous visibility for children who would otherwise not have a voice. Hundreds of inquiries about a child or the adoption process occur because of the partnership. The segment airs on Tuesdays during noon and 5:30 shows.

Award-winning journalist Patrice Wood has been delivering the news to Southern New England on WJAR-TV, Channel 10, since February, 1980, making her the longest-serving female newscaster in Rhode Island television history. Her Tuesday’s Child reports, profiling hundreds of foster children, have helped to bring visibility to hundreds of children and assisted in the adoption of many boys and girls she has featured since 2004, according to Adoption Rhode Island. In fact, Wood says that working with Adoption Rhode Island to help children find permanency and stability is one of the most rewarding experiences in her life. (link to Patrice bio)

Wendy’s Wonderful Kids

Wendy’s Wonderful Kids is a signature program of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. It is the only evidenced-based model of adoption recruitment in the country.

Adoption Rhode island’s WWK Recruiters implement this evidenced-based, child-focused recruitment model that is proven to be up to three times more effective at serving children who have been in foster care the longest, including teenagers, sibling groups and children with special needs. In part, due to our staffs’ successful implementation and fidelity to this model, Adoption Rhode Island has more than tripled the size of the RI WWK chapter. For more information about the model.

Extreme Family FindingSM

ARI was one of 7 agencies nationwide to be selected for a 7-month federally funded pilot to employ innovative strategies for finding permanency options for children most at risk. Extreme Family FindingSM finds permanent homes for children by creating a dynamic and vibrant team that constantly works together with urgency. Extreme Family Finders conduct diligent searches to reconnect youth with relatives or kin and utilize creative recruitment strategies while continuously assessing all area’s of a child’s life and their readiness for permanency. Funded by The Children’s Bureau, ARI launched the EFF program in latter March.

Counseling Services

Adoption Rhode Island provides adoption and permanency-competent, trauma-informed counseling services for foster and adopted children, as well as those impacted by foster care and adoption, including adult adoptees, kinship caregivers, and adoptive parents. Services include home-based and agency-based outpatient services, such as individual, family, and sibling counseling, a variety of support groups, and consultation to the community, including teachers, doctors, and clinicians across RI and beyond. Services are individualized and responsive to the unique needs of the children, teens, and adult we serve. Our clinicians are trained in numerous evidenced-based and promising practices and are skilled in treating children who have experienced loss, grief, separation and trauma.
Please contact us for more information. To download our brochure click here.

Enrichment Activities and Services

Express Yourself!

Express Yourself is a series of experiential workshops for youth impacted by foster care and adoption. Offered monthly, these FREE workshops offer children and their caregivers an opportunity to meet others with similar life experiences and express themselves in a creative and supportive environment. It also give caregivers a “night-off” from cooking, as a meal is always served with each workshop.

Local artists and clinicians lead exciting and fun filledworkshops. Each lesson plan includes instruction and “hands-on” assistance with the craft, art project or other activity. Additionally, issues relevant to foster care and adoption are threaded through each activity in a casual, comfortable manner. This program is open to all community youth impacted by adoption/foster care! Contact our Child & Family Support program for more information.

Creative Arts

Creative Arts is a two-hour workshop program that provides an opportunity for youth impacted by foster care to explore, exercise, and develop their creativity through multiple artistic modalities. The workshops are supported by ARI staff and facilitated by consultants from the community who have a personal and professional background in making their own art and are passionate about giving the same opportunity to youth.

Facilitators provide projects meant to stimulate youth’s minds in new and inventive ways utilizing expected and unexpected materials. Past projects have included painting with q-tips and pencil erasers, creating sculptures, and building and painting model ships and planes.

Forever Siblings Program

One of Adoption Rhode Island’s core beliefs is supporting, encouraging, and facilitating healthy sibling relationships, particularly when siblings are separated in the child welfare system. We honor the importance of the sibling relationship, which research shows can be more powerful than a child’s bond to a parent.

In 2017, a group Adoption Rhode Island staff came together and created a 4-day overnight summer camp program that brought siblings together who had been separated in care. For these few days, siblings were able to bunk together, build fun childhood memories, and live carefree in the beautiful landscape of Camp Aldersgate in Foster, RI (insert link here). Since this first year, the size of the program has nearly tripled, bringing together more and more siblings, some of whom have not seen each other in months.

In 2019, Adoption Rhode Island further brought to life the program’s vision to include sibling reunion events, as well as on-going clinical support to assist siblings in repairing disconnected relationships. It is the agency’s hope through further expansion that more sibling groups will be served, healed, and reunified so they may enjoy their sibling relationships long into adulthood.

If you wish to learn more about the Forever Siblings program, including how to volunteer, please contact our Child & Family Support program at

Summer Camp Scholarship Program

Some of a child’s greatest joys are experienced during those warm summer breaks from school. Attending camp is often one of those joys. For children in foster care, childhood experiences are sometimes overshadowed by the complexities of living in a child welfare system, which is why Adoption Rhode Island has worked closely with the community to create our Summer Camp Scholarship Program. Since the early 2000s, through multiple community partnerships, Adoption Rhode Island has been able to provide more than 500 “camperships” for children and teens in foster care to attend day camp, in-state overnight camp, and even out-of-state overnight camp, allowing children to have fun, build new friendships, and long-lasting memories.

This program is open to foster and adopted children. For information, contact

The Hasbro Wish Program

Adoption Rhode Island is both proud and grateful for its long-standing relationship with Hasbro, Inc. In 2017, Hasbro began funding for Adoption Rhode Island’s Wish program, a program dedicated to providing children with enrichment and educational opportunities (a.k.a. fun!). Since its inception, the Wish program has granted more than 250 wishes for children, such as music lessons for a sibling group, annual zoo memberships, concert tickets, Disney on Ice tickets, shopping spree for ‘new job’ clothes, gym memberships, and amusement park passes to name a new.

This funding also allowed more than 30 children to attend our Forever Sibling summer camp together. While the wishes may seem simple, the difference made in the lives of our children is immeasurable! This program serves children registered with Adoption Rhode Island who are awaiting adoption. Referrals are made by the ARI Adoption and Permanency Specialist.

Holiday Gifts Program

Since the early 2000s, Adoption Rhode Island has hosted a holiday gifts program to ensure that children in the state’s foster care system have a holiday season to remember! Adoption Rhode Island works closely with its generous giving community to ensure that the wishes of our children are fulfilled during the holiday season, whether it be a new warm winter coat, a remote control car, or set of art supplies. Since inception, our holiday giving program has grown to be six times the size it once was, providing gifts for more than 300 children every year! If you or someone you know would like to support our holiday gifts drive, please contact us at!

Cardi’s Furniture Cares About Kids Program

NIROPE provides gift cards for furniture to children adopted on National Adoption Day as well as to children adopted through Adoption Rhode Island throughout the year. This program has helped hundreds of children pick out new beds, bureaus and other pieces of furniture to help them celebrate their adoption day.