September 17, 2018 -- Westchester County Executive George Latimer invited potential foster care parents to take part in the 14th Annual Heart Gallery Reception at the Greenburgh Public Library. The Heart Gallery is a traveling photographic exhibit that was created to raise awareness about adoption, and find permanent families for children in foster care. The portraits of children who are eligible for adoption will remain on display through Wednesday, September 19.

Latimer said: “Providing a loving home to a child can be one of the most rewarding accomplishments you experience throughout your lifetime. Here in Westchester County, we have many children who are in need of a permanent home. The Heart Gallery is a wonderful showcase that displays each child for who they really are, and we hope that it inspires people to open up their hearts and homes to our foster children.”

Commissioner of the Westchester County Department of Social Services Kevin McGuire said: “This is a special annual event because it gives us an opportunity to highlight the need for foster parents willing to share their hearts and provide a home. I want to offer a special thank you to those who have stepped up to the plate and given essential loving homes to these children.”

In March of 2001, photographer and foster care parent Cathy Maier developed an idea to create portraits of children in need of permanent, loving homes. Since then, Maier’s concept has been used in numerous states and cities across the country.

The annual exhibit is a collaborative initiative with The Heart Gallery of America, designed to increase the number of adoptive families for children needing homes throughout the County. Evidence-based studies have shown children who participate in a Heart Gallery Exhibit are three times more likely to be adopted. The purpose of this event is to show that every child is deserving of an everlasting home.

This event is organized by Westchester County’s Department of Social Services’ Child Welfare Division. Staff members will be available to provide information on the process of adoption, and answer any questions. There will also be an opportunity to speak directly with current foster care parents.

To request more information, contact Tonya Holt at (914) 995-1931 or .