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A picture-perfect moment: Photographers volunteer to help children in Central Texas foster care find homes

Through the Heart Gallery of Central Texas, photographers capture photos of children up for adoption. Those photos are placed in a gallery for families to see.

AUSTIN, Texas — Every picture a photographer captures tells a story. That is the goal, at least.  

When photographers have the opportunity to use their talents for impactful reasons, many seem to take it, especially volunteers with the Heart Gallery of Central Texas.

This community education and outreach initiative features more than 130 children in the foster care system who are waiting for adoption. 

The photos taken of them are typically the first thing families see when they start their adoption journey. 

As a photographer for 10 years, Taila Wade has carved out time from her business, Photography by Taila, to snap photos of about a dozen kids in the Heart Gallery. 

"I love that we can tell people's stories through photographs," she said.

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Earlier this month, Wade attended Michael's Forever Families shoot. He is a 9-year-old Austin-area boy looking for a forever family. 

Wade said every experience is a different adventure full of children with unique personalities. 

"As they just start telling me a little bit about themselves or something that they like, they get very comfortable," Wade said. 

When the shoot wraps up and the memory card is filled with hundreds of shots, the hard part begins: picking the best photos.

Those photos are then placed on the Heart Gallery website alongside their biography for families to see.

Before COVID-19, the photos were also displayed in various galleries around town. That will begin again when it is safe.

WATCH: Photographers volunteer to help children in Central Texas foster care find homes

"I hope, one day, I can help them in a different way, but now this is what I can do. Take a picture that will show a little bit of who they are," Wade said.

Dozens of photographers like Wade have volunteered their time over the years for the Heart Gallery. 

Any professional photographer interested in volunteering with the Heart Gallery can visit the website

If there are any issues or questions, email KVUE's Tori Larned at vlarned@kvue.com or find her on social media. She will connect you with the correct resources.


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