because everyone deserves a forever family...

About Us

The Heart Gallery is a travelling photographic exhibit created to find permanent families for children and youth living in foster care and group care.  The Heart Gallery project originated in 2001 in the United States.  Today, there are 120 Heart Galleries across America.

The Adoption Council of Canada (ACC) has always been intrigued by creative strategies to recruit adoptive families for children and youth in care.  In 2009, the ACC entered into preliminary discussions with the Heart Gallery of America on the idea of expanding the project into Canada.  As conversations progressed, the ACC, which is based in Ottawa, approached the Children’s Aid Society in the region to be the first official Heart Gallery in the country.

On April 15, 2010, the first Heart Gallery in Canada was officially launched.  The pilot project was championed by the ACC and the Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa (CASO), in conjunction with Tripp Photography and Associates.  Funding to develop and sustain the Ottawa Heart Gallery was generously provided by Jockey Being Family, CASO, and the ACC.

Over the past three years, CASO has integrated the Heart Gallery as an effective recruitment strategy. The Heart Gallery is multifaceted.  It helps to: empower children and youth by giving them an active role in their destiny; create a positive identity within children and youth; capture and showcase the inner and outer beauty of children and youth; create community awareness about the need and opportunity to provide permanent homes for children and youth in foster and group care. Of the 39 children photographed in Ottawa, 35 have been placed in their permanent adoption homes.

In 2012, the Heart Gallery Canada project expanded to a second pilot region: Guelph & Wellington County.  This chapter is a partnership between the ACC, Family & Children’s Services of Guelph and Wellington County (FCS Guelph), and Dean Palmer Photography.  The Guelph Heart Gallery officially launched to the public on Wednesday, October 24, 2012.  Funding to launch the second Heart Gallery project was kindly provided by Jockey Being Family, The Co-Operators, ACC, FCS Guelph, and Platters Catering.

On November 21, 2013, the Heart Gallery will extend to its third region in Canada with the support of the Edmonton & Area Child and Family Services Authority (CFSA) and Syked Photography.  Funding to launch the Edmonton chapter has kindly been provided by Jockey Being Family, CBRE Limited, Web Mechanical, ACC, and Edmonton and Area CFSA.

It is our belief that every child, youth, sibling group regardless of age, unique need or length of time in foster care, has a right to a permanent, legal connection to a caring family.  The Heart Gallery will change the face of adoption in our communities, and eventually, across the country.

The Heart Gallery of Ottawa is supported by Jockey Being Family™.