There are 423,773 children in foster care in the US, and 19,156 in Florida's system.
Of that number, 7824 foster children in Florida are waiting to be adopted.
Foster care was intended to be temporary, but many Florida children remain in care for years.
For children waiting to be adopted in Florida, the average length of stay in care is more than three years (38.9 months).
On average, children who were adopted in 2007 spent about 33.5 months in care before the adoption was finalized.
Older children in Florida are not as likely to be adopted as younger children.
The average age of Floridas adopted children is about 6.2 years, while waiting children are, on average, roughly 8.5 years old.
Research shows that for youth over the age of 9, the likelihood of being
adopted drops significantly.
To shorten the time children spend in care, child
welfare agencies must employ the best recruitment
tools possible to find families.
excerpt from Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS),
made available by the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect, Cornell University