ISSJ’s Adoption Policy
In the process of adoption, we attach importance on the welfare of children, since most of children for our adoption placement are in social care. The adoptive parent must be a person who accepts children deprived of family, and provides love, care, and healing. ISSJ supports such adoptive families from a long-term perspective.
The Adoptive Parents We Look for
Adoption provides children an opportunity to grow up in a loving family. Children have already experienced great loss and sorrow since they were separated from birth parent, and left institution where they have felt like home. That is why we look for adoptive parents who are open-minded and able to give feeling of safe and therapeutic support to children, and our prospective adoptive parents are expected to have qualities as below:
- Having enough stamina and energy for bringing up children
- Able to control over their own feelings and emotions
- Accepting trauma or attachment disorder children may have
- Giving consideration to children’s subconscious mind
- Keeping psychosocial distance with children
- Looking at the positive side and giving words of praise to children
- Having a sense of humor
- Good at time management
- Being creative
- Setting an appropriate target
- Understanding the importance of children’s identity
- Supportive when children try to search their roots
- Able to face the issue of gender or sexuality
- Ready to be a healing parent
- Accepting children as they are
- Able to seeking help to others and use support resources
- Couples having at least three years stable marital relationship
- Financially capable
- Not on fertility treatment
- Age difference between both of the applicants and children shall be under 45 years at the time of placement.
- If the the prospective adoptive parents (PAPs) have their own birth child(ren), the youngest one shall be 1-year old or over.
- If the PAPs have other adopted child(ren), their adoption procedure must be completed.
- If the PAPs are foreign nationals, they have to reside in Japan another three years from the time of application.
Adoption Service Fee
Training fee: 40,000 JPY (+20,000 JPY for interpretation, if necessary)
Adoption procedure cost: 985,000 JPY
Total: 1,025,000 JPY
[Breakdown of Service Fee]
|Training fee for the PAPs
*Requisite under the law
|Lectures and seminars||20,000 JPY||Training fee must be paid in lump.|
|On-site training (at baby home, etc.)||20,000 JPY|
|Interpretation (if necessary)||10,000 JPY/ day|
|Adoption procedure costs for the PAPs||Orientation||5,000 JPY|
|Initial interview||30,000 JPY|
|Home study||300,000 JPY|
(Including petition for adjudication at Japanese family court and post-placement support)
|650,000 JPY||By the day before the Placement of a child|
Adoption Agency Act 2017
Civil Code of Japan Article 727 Special Adoption
After Adopting a Child
☆Telling about adoption
Telling children about their adoption story is a formidable but crucial process for adoptive families. Preserving identity is one of children’s rights stipulated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child. While growing up, adoptive children may ask about their origin. Adoptive parents should explain just simply and honestly why they and birth parent chose adoption so that children can understand appropriately at their age. Adoption shouldn’t be a secret. It is important to tell the truth in an understandable way repeatedly in order to foster their sound growth.
☆Life Story Work
Children acquire a safe place as a member of adoptive family by adoption. However, loss and sorrow they experienced in their early life should continuously be noted since understanding and accepting personal history as a part of their entire life is quite important for development of emotional well-being and self-esteem. Life Story Work is helpful in order to look back on their past from the birth up to the present, and to express their feelings freely from both the good and bad sides. It aims to help children understand what has happened to them in the past, and process it.
We work together with adoptive parents so that children can reflect on their past in safe and comfortable circumstances and develop a positive sense of self.
ISSJ supports adoptive families working on Telling and Life Story Work via trainings, seminars, and counseling.
Previous adoption cases
Placements by fiscal year*
*The Japanese Fiscal Year begins on April 1st and ends on March 31st.
|Fiscal Year||Number of Placements|
The year shown above is that the adoptive child and PAPs are matched. After a period of adjustment during which they live together, an adoption petition is then submitted to the court. From the moment of matching until the petition is finished at the court, it usually takes one to three years.
Children considered for adoption by the ISSJ
Prospective adoptees and birth parents come from a variety of backgrounds, as seen below.
|Adoptee’s age||0~9 years old|
・Complicated family background (abuse by biological parents, alcoholism, drug use, criminal past, etc. of biological parents)
・Foreign nationality or statelessness
・Development and attachment issues
・Needs of medical care
※The above list does not fully cover the children’s backgrounds. During the group orientation, more information is provided.
Average age of adoptive parents
The figure below shows the average age of the adoptive parents (husband and wife) at the time of matching for placements made by ISSJ between 2015 and 2022 (fiscal year).
|Period||Number of placements||Average age|
For people who want to know more about ISSJ’s adoption process/policy, we hold an online group orientation session (English) on the third Tuesday of even-numbered months from 10:30am to 11:30am. We also have an online orientation in Japanese on the third Tuesday of odd-numbered months（ from 10:30am to 11:30am). The fee is 5000 yen. If you are interested in the orientation, please fill in the following form.
*Please note that the schedule may change due to national holidays in Japan. If there are any changes, we will notify you via this page or the email address that you fill in the application form.
The ISSJ staff will contact you later by email. If you have any questions, please contact us by email (issj＠issj.org) or call us (03-5840-5711, Mon-Fri 10:00am-17:00pm).