The Christmas Wish Project

Christmas Wish 2017

Christmas Wish 2016

Christmas is a time to spend with family, to celebrate the year and the hope of the future.

But what if your world was turned around, and you faced an uncertain future where Hospital was your home. These sick children, spending Christmas in hospitals around Australia, were surprised by Santa and a team of volunteers who brought some Christmas Magic into their lives through magical Santa photos.

These children thought they were having ‘normal’ Santa photos, but when they saw their finished artwork for the first time they were amazed! For some, this would be their only Christmas portrait. For others this was the first family portrait they’d ever had taken.

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Quadriplegic Mum and her Son Series

Karen Alsop's Video

Von Wong's Video

Her life was full of adventure Until a routine surgery changed her world forever

Sarah-Jane went into surgery after suffering a herniated disc in her back while on the job as an outdoor education instructor. Waking up from surgery the next day she found that she was no longer able to walk, or even hold her son. The operation had rendered her a quadriplegic.

Sarah-Jane Staszak has weathered a storm with Hamish by her side. Her dream for her son is that she can continue provide him life changing adventures, despite her physical limitations.

When we heard SJ’s story, we immediately started devising a plan to help make this dream more of a reality. The Heart Project is all about bringing joy and hope through Photography.

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Tahliyah's Story - The beginnings of The Heart Project

Tahliyah and Jacqui's Heart Project Playlist

I first came to hear about Tahliyah when her mum connected with me prior to their move from Adelaide to Melbourne.

Jacqui shared with me about her beautiful daughter and the challenges of her unknown condition. Several months later Jacqui messaged me about wanting a Story Art creation for Tahliyah. A photographic composite that would free Tahliyah from her limited mobility and metaphorically give her 'wings to fly'.

I've always known that Story Art had the ability to bring dreams to life, but this project has moved beyond exciting the imagination to bringing hope and joy. I'm so thankful to Tahliyah for giving me an opportunity to use my own gifts to provide her and and family with this gift of hope.

It is my desire to help find an answer for this family and other families who are navigating the confusing waters of unknown diseases and challenging situations. In partnership with The Sebastian Foundation we hope to bring joy to families through future Story Art pieces, raise money for research, and help find answers for Tahliyah's family and others.

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Jacqui and Tahliyah have since become an integral part of The Heart Project. Jacqui has created her very own heart project image for another struggling family and runs Christmas Wish in Adelaide.


The Get Well Tree

12 Australian photographers have united to produce a unique storybook designed to comfort children who are unwell or in hospital.

Titled ‘The Get Well Tree’, the book includes 14 pages of beautiful photoshop artworks featuring photos of childhood cancer survivors Evie Gleeson (5) and Indy Dawes (4) who met in hospital 2 years ago.

The project, headed up by award-winning Australian photographer Karen Alsop, is part of the latest initiative released by community group The Heart Project which aims to change the lives of others through photography.


  • Wishing Well Background
  • Heart shaped tree

All the stories...

We have so many more stories to share. Please visit this blog to find out more about our various projects:


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