The Cradle Blog

Why does The Cradle have a Nursery?

The Cradle Nursery collage

So… why does The Cradle Nursery exist?

The Cradle is the only adoption agency in the United States operating an on-site Nursery. Put simply, our Nursery operates 24/7 to ensure a safe, neutral place for infants while parents take the time they need to decide if adoption will be the plan for this child.

According to Illinois Adoption Law surrounding agency adoptions dictates that a birth mother may legally consent to a voluntary plan of adoption no earlier than 72 hours after the birth of her baby. A birth father may legally consent to adoption prior to the baby’s birth, but the consent does not become valid until 72 hours after the baby’s birth.

The decision to relinquish parental rights of The Child is final and irrevocable once legal documents are signed, and The Cradle knows this decision takes thought, time, and a great deal of love and consideration.

How much does The Nursery this cost for the parent?

The Cradle’s services are provided to expectant parents free of charge, including The Cradle Nursery, thanks to donations from our Cradle community.

Who cares for the babies?

Our licensed nurses provide one-on-one, personal attention to the little ones in our care, from cuddles to changing to bottle-feeding.

What happens if infants have special needs or need additional care?

Throughout the pandemic, the infants in The Cradle Nursery have always had access to checkups and specialist appointments, if needed. As a licensed child-welfare agency and not a medical facility, The Cradle does not receive Medicaid reimbursement to pay for the specialist and routine health care costs that protect the infants in our Nursery.

How does the Nursery stay open?

We are so grateful that, currently, gifts from Cradle supporters cover one in four days of nursery operations. With the support of our community, we can provide certainty that the infants in our care are safe, healthy and comfortable before they continue their adoption journeys in loving homes. Please consider making an 100% tax-deductible gift to The Cradle today to support the babies in our care.