Adoption Specialist
Ann Arbor, MI Adoption, Foster Care, Child Welfare
Job Type


Join a dynamic, fast-paced, inclusive and supportive workplace focused on high quality services to children and families in our community.

Salary:  $40,281 - $51,482

Great benefits

Supportive work environment


Hands Across The Water is a licensed, non-profit child placing agency. The Adoption Specialist is responsible for the day-to-day needs of a caseload of state adoption cases and for ensuring compliance of said cases with the applicable provisions of all governing rules. This position maintains a caseload of youth legally free for adoption from the child welfare system. The Adoption Specialist provides case support and assessment and support of children awaiting adoption as well as to families interested in adopting children served by the program. This position may also be assigned the foster care cases of children awaiting adoption as well as foster care cases of temporary court wards as necessary to meet departmental needs.

This position requires significant travel including in-office, in-home, and outside of office work, often during non-traditional hours such as evenings and weekends, as well as periodic on-call duties. As such, this position is eligible for remote office hours after 6 months of positive completion of training/orientation period, depending on the needs of the Program and agency.

 The Adoption Specialist shall complete a CWTI PSI (Child Welfare Training Institute Pre-Service Institute) training that includes a total of 270 hours (9 weeks) of competence-based classroom and field training. Additionally, if the candidate does not have current experience and approved training in foster care, the Adoption Specialist will complete 60 hours (2 weeks) CWTI PSTT (Child Welfare Training Institute Program Specific Transfer Training) during their first year of employment. 


Hands Across The Water is committed to making proactive efforts to recruit and retain personnel who reflect the diverse identities and experiences of the communities and families we serve. We strongly encourage the following groups to apply: people of color, individuals who have experienced poverty or economic hardship, people who identify as LGBTQ and those with lived experience in the foster care system or adoption triad.

Hands Across The Water does not discriminate against an employee or applicant for employment with respect to hire, tenure, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, or a matter directly or indirectly related to employment, because of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, marital status, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, political beliefs or mental or physical disability. 



Minimum degree REQUIRED is a Bachelor's Degree in Social Work, Sociology, Psychology, Criminal Justice, Child Development, Human Services, Family Studies, Education, Gerontology, Forensic Psychology, Social Science or related field. Experience in a professional setting with youth and families required. Strong written and oral communication skills, professionalism, organizational skills and comfort with computer technology/database entry is required.

Appropriate candidate for this position must have the ability to handle stress well, have the ability to be an active listener with good clinical observation and evaluation skills, be flexible and able to handle change, be a team player yet able to work independently, able to multi-task, and maintain case responsibility and follow-through with multiple competing demands. Adoption Specialist will demonstrate a commitment to the training, preparation and support of adoptive families and a commitment to the belief that all children deserve lifelong family connections. Knowledge of the adoption process and available supportive resources for youth and families in Michigan is preferred.

Candidate may not have been convicted of child abuse or neglect, a felony involving harm or threatened harm to an individual within the 10 years immediately preceding the date of hire, or be listed on the central registry as a perpetrator of child abuse or child neglect. The Adoption Specialist shall possess a valid Driver’s License, positive driving record and proof of automobile insurance.

Candidate with CWTI foster care and/or adoption training to receive a signing bonus. Please submit resume WITH cover letter detailing why you are interested in this position.

Salary Description
$40,281 - $51,482