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How many children are in foster care in the U.S.? In my State?

Child Welfare
Foster Care


Through the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS), the Children’s Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, collects data from the States about children in foster care and children who are adopted from foster care. According to the most current AFCARS report, AFCARS Report #19, there were approximately 400,540 children in foster care on September 30, 2011. The full report is available online.

In addition, the Children’s Bureau publishes a table that includes State-specific information on the number of entries, exits, and children in care on the last day of the Federal fiscal year (FY) 2011. This table also provides comparable data for the years 2003–2011.