Artwork of Stark County foster care youth on display at the Massillon Museum

Posted on January 09, 2024


In partnership with The Repository, every Monday, Stark Community Foundation is highlighting positive happenings in our community. Here’s to Good News Mondays! 

Stark County Job & Family Services’ Heart Gallery art exhibition pairs local artists with area children waiting to be adopted from foster care to create a series of special portraits.

The gallery will be on display starting Tuesday through Feb. 11 at the Massillon Museum

The Heart Gallery was created to bring attention to the need for adoptive families in our community. Stark County currently has 500 children living in the foster care system, and nearly a quarter of these youth are in permanent custody and eligible for adoption. 

After its debut at Canton First Friday at Patina Arts Centre during National Adoption Month in November, the gallery has been on display at the Canton Museum of Art and the North Canton Public Library. Its final stop is the Massillon Museum, and the community is invited to view the artwork and learn more about foster care and adoption in Stark County.

This year’s exhibition features 12 youth in Stark County’s foster system, portrayed by nine artists. 

Portraits on display will include: 

  • Abagail, by artist Alaska Thompson. Abagail is a teenager who enjoys school, especially math class. 
  • Ahna, by artist Madison Miller. Ahna’s favorite colors are pink and purple, and she enjoys playing outside.
  • Alexander and Jaramiah, by artist Kat Francis. Alexander and Jaramiah are brothers with a lot of common interests— including basketball, superheroes and math class. 
  • Brendon, by artist Alexa Polinori. Brendon’s favorite activities are swimming, running and swinging at the playground. 
  • Coltyn, by artist Kaley Weaver. Coltyn enjoys building Legos and playing board games, especially Uno. 
  • Hayli, by artist David Sherrill. Hayli is talkative, outgoing and loves fashion and playing soccer. 
  • Isaac, by artist Heather Bullach. Isaac is a teenager who likes having fun, making people laugh and watching and playing sports.
  • Jennifer and Jamespeter, by artist Tim Carmany. Jennifer is interested in writing, singing and dancing, and she plans to write her own book. Jamespeter likes to play football and basketball, and his favorite subject in school is science. 
  • Kylie, by William Keomany. Kylie is a 2-year-old with special needs. She has a contagious smile and loves Minnie Mouse, dogs and cartoons. 
  • Lexianna, by Alaska Thompson. Lexianna is interested in the arts and enjoys drawing, writing stories and singing. 

Residents interested in becoming foster and adoptive parents can take the next step by calling 330-451-8789 or emailing

To learn more about the gallery, foster care and adoption, visit

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