The process to become a foster or adoptive parent in Ohio has become easier. 

Governor Mike DeWine and Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted announced the launch of a statewide online portal to streamline adoption and foster care in the state.  

InnovateOhio, along with the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services developed the OCAF portal with the goal of making Ohio a leader in simplifying the pathway to become a foster or adoptive parent. 

The new tool gives users the ability to complete and submit applications electronically. Previously, the application process was done on paper. The new online application creates a more streamlined, user-friendly experience that increases efficiency and accuracy. 

Prospective caregivers can access the portal from Ohio's website and can either select an agency they prefer to work with or from a local agency. 

Live chat support will also be available during regular business hours. 

Agencies and state administrators now have access to data dashboards and reports that highlight, in real-time, inquiry and application data across the state and by the agency. This also enables easier and more direct communications with interested individuals and families.

"With about 15,000 young people in our foster care system, there's no doubt Ohio needs more foster and adoptive families," said Lt. Governor Husted. "I know firsthand the impact this will have, as I was in foster care and then adopted. Anything we can do to improve this process is going to make a difference in the lives of a lot of kids."

Ohioans interested in becoming foster or adoptive parents can visit and contact local children services agencies.