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Christian Adoptive Families

Nightlight or CAC

Hi, we’ve been doing a lot of research on agencies, and I think we have narrowed our options to: Nightlight Christian Adoptions or Christian Adoption Consultants.

Is anyone able to share experience about either of these? Thanks in advance!


It looks like these are two different types of organizations. Research them carefully as one is NOT a full adoption agency.

Posted by NJHeart2Heart on Jan 05, 2018 at 1:19pm

We adopted our first child through an agency that has since merged with Nightlight (and was very similar). I recommend them highly. We loved that they counseled the birthparents both before and after the birth of the child, and a caseworker was there for us through the whole process (literally, they were physically present when we were at the hospital, during our matching meeting helping to guide the conversation, etc. Some agencies have no physical presence and only do things over the phone or through text). However we did not use them for our second adoption. We waited 15 months to be selected by an expectant mother for our first adoption, so when we were ready to adopt again 2.5 years later, we decided to go with a multi-agency approach in hopes of a shorter wait. This led us to hire Christian Adoption Consultants. As stated above, CAC is NOT an adoption agency. They do not work with expectant parents, and they do not do home studies. However, they are fabulous. They help you with every step of the journey. It’s like hiring someone to counsel you through every decision. They help you choose a home study agency in your state, and give you a list of adoption agencies or adoption lawyers that they have vetted (in states that have adoption-friendly laws) to choose from. These agencies/attorneys have low or no up-front cost, meaning their application fee is low or waived for CAC clients, and they don’t require any additional funds until you are matched with an expectant parent. You can choose as many or as few as you like. We chose 5 (and kept adding as we went, ending up with 9 total). You apply to those agencies directly (so lots of additional paperwork, though depending on the “level” of CAC services you choose, you can pay them extra to fill out all the applications for you, and even create your profile book for you, you just provide the photos. We did not do this). Some agencies only send their expectant parent situations directly to CAC, and then your consultant would forward them to you if she thinks it is a fit for you based on your preferences. Once you are matched, then you work directly with the agency/attorney that the situation was from for the remainder of the adoption.
So when we hired CAC, we had originally planned to have Nightlight do our home study and be one of the agencies we chose (in addition to the ones we chose from the CAC list). However, Nightlight will not do a home study and then send a copy to multiple agencies. So basically, if Nightlight does your home study, you can only use it with them (you can’t do the multi-agency approach with them). Plus, their pay structure is spread out over the course of the adoption timeline. So you pay something like $8000 to them just to be “active” and before they will show your profile, and then when you are matched the cost at placement is not as much. But you likely don’t want to go with a bunch of other agencies if you have already shelled out $8k to one agency; it’s just not practical. You would want to only work with them. With the CAC agencies you may pay anywhere from $0 - $500 up front, show your profile without paying anything additional, but then when you are matched you immediately have to pay the entire remaining balance (anywhere from $30k - $45k in one lump sum, or some agencies might break it into 2 payments, one at match and one at placement). So that’s something to think about. In the end, we did not use Nightlight at all for our second adoption, though we wish we could have. And, btw, we waited 6 months to be selected for our second adoption, so the multi-agency approach did shorten our wait, though the agency it was through ended up not being one of the CAC agencies (and that agency was terrible, ugh, but that’s a story for another time!).
I hope all that made sense! Feel free to ask if you have additional questions!

Posted by sugarcane4450 on Jan 05, 2018 at 4:06pm

Another thing to consider is distance. Nightlight is nationwide. We were not willing or able to travel across the country. With CAC we were able to only choose agencies that were in states that we felt were a reasonable distance.

Posted by sugarcane4450 on Jan 05, 2018 at 4:23pm

Sugarcane, thanks so much for sharing your experiences. That’s very helpful! Yes, I understand CAC isn’t an agency, and I’d never looked into using a consultant until a friend recommended them yesterday. Now I’m just trying to weigh the pros and cons and decide whether we’re comfortable working with a consultant. It seems logical—the mulit agency approach. I’m sure it has its downfalls too though, and that’s kinda what I’m looking for.
Thanks again grin

Posted by AlaskanWife on Jan 06, 2018 at 3:47am

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