The children we have featured on our website who wait for adoptive families

  • are most often in the foster care system and cannot return to their birth families for a variety of reasons.
  • need help overcoming hurt related to past trauma(s) and/or abandonment.
  • are often part of a sibling (brothers and/or sisters) group.
  • are often older than four years of age and behind emotionally.

While you may not see “all” of the children in need of a “no matter what” family in our Gallery, please understand that those who are waiting share similar hopes for a family and similar obstacles to being matched with one. If these children do not seem like a “match,” chances are others who are not featured here will not be a “match,” either. However, if you have patience and perseverance, and are willing to adapt your home and life to fit a child’s needs, please keep pursuing and learning more about adopting from foster care.

Please keep in mind that, in order to be considered for a child within our Gallery, you must have an approved public adoption home study. If you are unsure if your home study is public, please contact us via phone (414-475-1246 or 800-762-8063) or email

Lastly, please keep in mind that circumstances for the children within the Gallery can change rather quickly and for a variety of reasons. When a child is listed as waiting, this means the child is quite literally “waiting” for their “no matter what” family and are still available. If a child is listed as matched, this typically means the child’s social work team has identified a match with a prospective “no matter what” family. The Coalition will continue to collect inquiries for a child listed as matched, and this information will be shared with the child’s social work team in the event that permanency falls through for whatever reason.

We invite you to check out our tip sheet, Not Too Old for Forever: Adopting Older Youth.

The Heart Gallery of Wisconsin
The Heart Gallery of Wisconsin, a travelling photographic exhibit of some of Wisconsin’s waiting children, is a program of the Coalition for Children, Youth & Families. If you are interested in hosting the Heart Gallery of Wisconsin, please contact us.

The Wisconsin Department of Children and Families provides support and funding for this recruitment effort on behalf of children. We thank them for their belief that all children grow best in permanent loving families.

Neveah, Legacy, & Karma

Meet 16 year old Neveah, 12 year old Legacy, and 10 year old Karma. Nevaeh is described as lovely and helpful, especially with her younger siblings. She does very well academically (math is her favorite subject) and she appears motivated to attend college one day. She currently reports that she [...]


Raynia is a mature and intelligent young lady who can be silly and friendly around people with whom she has established trust. She is insightful and can be a good advocate for herself. She likes activities that include running, swimming, and crafting art projects (her profile image is one of [...]


Eli is a happy and compassionate young boy. Two of his favorite subjects in school are science and history. When Eli is not enjoying time outdoors around the campfire or swimming, you might find this joyful young fellow indoors occupied by Uno, Farkle, or some other board game. Eli also enjoys [...]


Randy is a caring and loving child who enjoys making others happy. He is a fan of drawing. He also likes to stay active and enjoys swimming and Taekwondo. Overall, Randy generally does well in school. He likes to interact with children in his peer group and continues to work on growing [...]


Tramonte aka “Trey” is a happy and active child who likes eating crunchy foods like apples and carrots. He is quite personable and enjoys playing with other children and pets. Trey is pretty self-aware when it comes to his emotions; when he is feeling upset or sad, he often will [...]


Neveah is a fun spirited, silly, sweet, and caring young girl. She continues to work hard and has shown tremendous growth in building trusting relationships with peers and adults in her life; Neveah receives great joy in engaging in positive interpersonal interactions with others. When Neveah [...]


Dalana is a charming, take-charge kind of kid. She is talkative and funny. Dalana prefers more indoor activities like baking with the family and watching T.V., but she also enjoys occasional active fun like basketball and riding bikes. Dalana is creative. One of her unique talents is an [...]


Samaria is described as “insightful” and she understands what she needs to be successful. Samaria is able to self-advocate and enjoys talking through expectations with adults. She loves music, art, and poetry. Samaria also loves to tell jokes and make others around her laugh. Samaria is quick [...]