I would like information about foster care and adoption, including fees, trainings and licensing requirements.

Children & Families of Iowa has many training opportunities and information about adoption and foster care options. Please contact your local office for more information. 


For information or referrals regarding foster care and adoption services, please contact Iowa Kidsnet, a statewide collaboration of agencies dedicated to the safety and permanency of children and families:

Phone:  800-243-0756

Visit Iowa Kidsnet » 


I want to speak with a family therapist or counselor.

Children & Families of Iowa offers therapy services across the state. Please call your local office for more information.


I was placed for adoption through Iowa Children’s Home Society. How do I go about locating my birth parents?

Adoption records in Iowa are sealed. However, Children & Families of Iowa is permitted to supply non-identifying information about biological families. Non-identifying information includes nationality, education, medical history, interests, etc. There is a $100 charge to locate the record and copy the information. Some records have only sketchy details on the birth family.

For more information, please e-mail [email protected].


I am having problems with my teen and need information about treatment programs available to my family and me.

Please contact Children & Families of Iowa’s Cornerstone Recovery program at 515-289-2272. Children & Families of Iowa can help you determine the best option for your family.

You can also contact your local office for counseling and other resources available to you.


Who should I call if my family or I need help but I don’t know which service would be best?

If you need help but don’t know which CFI service you need, call your local office. They can help connect you with someone who can help you determine which services best meet your unique situation.


I need affordable child care. Who do I call?

Children & Families of Iowa offers a number of child care options in the Des Moines area. Call 515-282-2193 to learn more.


I need help leaving an abusive relationship or someone I care about needs help leaving an abusive relationship.

If you are in immediate danger, please first call 911. You can also call Children & Families of Iowa’s Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-942-0333.  This call is free and confidential, and the line is answered by trained domestic violence advocates 24/7.


I think a child I know may be being abused.

If you suspect a child is being abused, don’t wait. Call the Iowa Department of Human Services at 800-362-2178.

Get more information on reporting child abuse in Iowa » 


How Can I Help?

What kind of non-monetary donations do you accept?

Please see Children & Families of Iowa’s current wish list to see items that its clients need most right now. Based on current needs and storage space, CFI is not able to accept clothing.

However, Children & Families of Iowa often has one-time, immediate needs for its programs, especially domestic violence services. Please call 515-697-7968 to see if any of CFI’s clients can use the items you have to donate.

Children & Families of Iowa has also partnered with St. Vincent De Paul, which has a free clothing department where CFI’s clients, as well as others in the community who are very much in need, can “shop” for free. When donating your items to St. Vincent, you must specify the “Free Department” or the items will be sold instead of given away. St. Vincent picks up items or you may drop them off at 1426 6th Avenue (between Clark and Forest Streets) in Des Moines. Their phone number is 515-282-8327.

When donating gently-used clothes, please consider if you would give it to someone you knew or if you would want to get it yourself. Please refrain from donating clothes that have rips, stains or tears.


Are there any items that you do not accept as donations?

Children & Families of Iowa is accredited with the Council on Accreditation, which holds the organization to high standards. Due to this, CFI is unable to accept donations of used, stuffed or plush animals and toys. In general, Children & Families of Iowa is only able to accept new or gently-used, in-season children’s and casual women’s clothing. CFI recommends donating other items to St. Vincent De Paul (515-282-8327) or FreeStore (515-282-3733). These organizations are unable to accept used car seats.


I want to help. What items do your clients need the most right now?

Children & Families of Iowa’s clients always have a need for bus tokens, cab coupons, calling cards, luggage, backpacks, tote bags, school supplies, baby formula, diapers and wipes, full-size toiletry items (shampoo, soap, deodorant, tooth paste), new personal care items (toothbrushes, hair brushes, combs, feminine supplies, etc.), and new socks and underwear of all sizes.


I am interested in doing an internship with Children & Families of Iowa.

Children & Families of Iowa is a great place to learn about nonprofit work and social services. To inquire about an internship with CFI, please contact our Foundation Assistant & Volunteer Coordinator. If there is a potential match for the position for which you applied, you will be personally contacted to set up an interview.


Do you accept used toys, books and outdoor riding toys?

Children & Families of Iowa occasionally accepts toys such as books and outdoor riding toys if they are in good condition. Due to licensing issues, CFI cannot accept stuffed toys of any kind.

If you would like to donate your new or gently-used toys, please contact our Foundation Assistant & Volunteer Coordinator, who will be able to tell you whether CFI currently has a need for your item(s). You can may also contact St. Vincent de Paul at 515-282-8327.


Do you accept donations of furniture, appliances and small household items?

Children & Families of Iowa does not have the space to accept these donations. However, CFI has partnered with FreeStore, a nonprofit organization that accepts donations for victims of domestic violence who leave their abusers and need assistance setting up new homes, free from violence. FreeStore volunteers can be contacted at 515-282-3733 to pick-up your donations.


My company would like to collect items for Children & Families of Iowa. Whom should I contact?

Children & Families of Iowa has many opportunities for groups and companies to get involved restoring hope, building futures and changing lives. If you would like to host a donation drive, event or find out about group volunteer opportunities, please call 515-697-7905. CFI will work with you to find a project that fits what you are interested in doing and what its clients need most right now.


Where can I make my donation and should it be addressed to anyone specific?

Please mail your donation to:

Foundation for Children & Families of Iowa
1111 University Ave
Des Moines, IA 50314

You do not need to address the envelope to any person, specifically. If you prefer to drop off your donation, you may do so at the same address.


Jobs and Volunteering

I am interested in volunteering with Children & Families of Iowa. Whom do I contact?

Children & Families of Iowa can always use a helping hand to make its programs and other activities run smoothly. Volunteers at Children & Families of Iowa help CFI sort donations, serve as mentors to at-risk teens and children, help the organization run events, provide training to victims of domestic violence, provide leadership as members of our Board of Directors and Board of Trustees, and much more.

If your personal mission matches that of the agency, and you want an opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of others, please contact the Foundation Assistant & Volunteer Coordinator at 515-697-7968.


How do I apply for a position with Children & Families of Iowa?

Please view current open positions on our Careers page. The page also has instructions on how to apply for positions you are interested in.


About Children & Families of Iowa

My question doesn’t appear on this FAQ page.  Whom should I contact for an answer?

Children & Families of Iowa is here to help! If you have any questions about donations to Children & Families of Iowa, please call 515-288-1981 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Outside of regular hours or if no on is available, leave a message and CFI will get back to you as soon as we can.

You can also submit a question online through the contact page.


How do I get to Children & Families of Iowa?

Children & Families of Iowa’s main office is located at 1111 University Avenue, between 11th Street and 12th Street in Des Moines, five blocks west of Mercy Hospital.

To get to the office, take I-235 to the 6th Ave exit. Take 6th Ave to University Avenue and turn left. Go five blocks to 11th Street and turn right. CFI’s driveway is the first drive on the left.

The brick building takes up the entire block between 11th and 12th Streets. The main entrance and parking lot are on the back (north) side of the building.


Who do I call to find out which services are available near me?

Call your closest office to find out which services are available in your area.


I would like to request a speaker to come to my company, organization or group.  How do I arrange this?

To arrange for a speaker from Children & Families of Iowa to come to your company, organization or group, please contact Amy Stapp-Arpy, Chief Development Officer/Vice President of Development & Communications. You can send her an e-mail or call her at 515-697-7921.