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About the Heart Gallery of New Mexico

Welcome to the Heart Gallery of New Mexico website. Many children become available for adoption each year in New Mexico. In some cases, foster children may eventually be eligible for adoption. As an adoptive parent you are able to provide a child with a permanent, loving, stable family and the security of a forever family.


The History of the Heart Gallery of New Mexico

On March 29, 2001, at the suggestion of Santa Fe photographer and adoptive mother Cathy Maier, the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department brought the expression "a picture is worth a thousand words" to life at the nation’s first Heart Gallery exhibit. The reception at Santa Fe’s Gerald Peters Gallery drew a crowd of people inspired by stirring portraits of children in CYFD custody who were dreaming of finding their "forever families." The portraits were created and donated by some of the region’s most talented photographers.

Since then, the annual Heart Gallery of New Mexico has found homes for many children who were considered "hard to place" due to their age or the fact that they were members of a sibling group. One of the happiest endings came in June 2005, when a very special portrait inspired one couple to adopt five teenaged siblings. Two photographers even "clicked with" and adopted their charming subjects.

Thanks to media coverage and technical support from CYFD, the Heart Gallery spread to several other states. In January 2005, a Parade article about the project by Santa Fe reporter Rosemary Zibart touched the hearts of millions of readers, resulting in a virtual explosion of Heart Gallery groups across America, where 118,000 foster children are waiting to be adopted. Later coverage included People, the Today Show, CNN, MSNBC, USA Weekend, the New York Times, ABC World News Tonight and 20/20.

Currently 42 states have held or are planning Heart Gallery openings, and the number of Heart Gallery-inspired placements in the end should number in the thousands. CYFD continues to be the conduit for the positive energy of these dedicated planners. The federal Children’s Bureau has been a strong supporter of the project, and has named the Heart Gallery a "best practice." On November 1, 2005, they hosted the first National Heart Gallery exhibit at Union Station in Washington, D.C. Please visit for more information on The Heart Gallery as a national movement.

The Heart Gallery NM online gallery is maintained by the New Mexico Children, Youth & Families Department. Please e-mail gallery-related inquiries to



About the Foundation

The Heart Gallery of New Mexico Foundation, a non-profit partner of CYFD working to support New Mexico's foster youth,was created to raise funds necessary to expand the Heart Gallery of New Mexico as well as to improve upon and support other New Mexico initiatives which encourage adoption through foster care.

The Heart Gallery of New Mexico Foundation is a registered 501c(3) organization. For more information about the foundation, please email us. You may also write to us at:

Candace Gould, Executive Director
Heart Gallery of New Mexico Foundation
13170-B Central Ave SE #190 Albuquerque, NM 87123