Heart and Soul Story is a social enterprise with a vision to facilitate empathy & connection through the sharing of life stories, with the aim to ultimately contribute to increased emotional intelligence, resilience and overall well being within society.
As an experienced strategist and qualitative researcher with an honours degree in Psychology and Post Graduate degree in Social Impact, my passion and area of expertise lies specifically in three areas
– Intergenerational programs (Design, facilitation & stakeholder management)
– Life Story Facilitation (Design & Interviews)
– Third Sector Social Impact research and strategy (Story Research for Social Good )
So in essence, I am a FACILITATOR of STORIES.
I work with different individuals and groups to help them explore, share & examine their stories.
In particular, what drives me, is to embark on the journey to the heart and soul of any matter I am working on. I aim to help whoever it is I am working with reach the heart and soul of their story.
If you are looking for my experience and testimonials you can read below or head to
….but if you are interested more in what speaks to my heart and soul have a look around this site or please feel free to contact me.
“I Acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we live & work. I pay my respects to Elders of the Past, Present and Future and to their stories.”
Heart and Soul Story has been supported by:
Awesome Foundation, Layne Beachley Foundation,
SEFA/ MACQUARIE Kickstarter
“One of the rising stars of the social entrepreneur movement”
Samantha Heron is one of the rising stars of the social entrepreneur movement. Her social enterprise Heart & Soul Story has already broken new ground with the highly original STEP (Seniors and Teens Empathy Program), weaving together new strands of the social fabric by putting older and younger members of the community in touch with each other. That program will grow because, like all Sam Heron’s initiatives, it responds to the urgent need to reduce the risk of social isolation – in this case by establishing new connections between people (teenagers and nursing-home residents) whose voices are often not heard. Unlike many people with good intentions, Sam is tackling the challenge of social fragmentation on the ground, with practical strategies for rebuilding local neighbourhoods and communities.
Hugh Mackay AO, Social Researcher, Psychologist, Author, Founder IPSOS Mackay Report, delivered the Australia Day Address on 23 January 2019.
“She showed an excellent understanding of our mission and challenges”
When with Media Access Australia ( Australia’s only independent not-for-profit charitable organisation dedicated to increasing web and digital accessibility for people with disability), we contracted Samantha to review our brand image with a very wide and diverse range of stakeholders. She showed a great capacity to understand them, to adapt the usual focus group format for people with various disabilities, and the brand strategy and feedback we received, as a result, was spot-on and actionable. She achieved this within a limited budget, and with an excellent understanding of our mission and challenges.
Belinda Kerslake, Marketing Manager, the Butterly Foundation
“Provided smart and insightful advice”
Samantha provided the Australian Conservation Foundation’s climate change campaign with smart and insightful pro-bono advice during 2011. In addition to helping us prepare the brief for a major evaluation of one of our biggest alliance-based campaigns (‘Say Yes to a price on pollution’), Samantha helped us identify and select the right external consultant to engage. Interestingly, this consultant was already known to us but we weren’t aware of their full skill set. Samantha joined the dots and paved the way for a very successful evaluation of our work.
Philip Freeman, Strategist, Word Wildlife Fund Australia
“It is rare to find the mix of talents you get in Sam”
I have known and worked with Sam for over 10 years. It is rare to find the mix of talents you get in Sam. She is smart, applied, enthusiastic, open, honest, fun, generous, loyal, creative and determined. I would hire Sam again and again, in fact, I have.
Louise Kanis, Executive Director of Public Affairs and Communication, Monash Health
“People open up and tell her things that they wouldn’t dream of otherwise and she manages to get to the heart of human motivations.”
Creative, positive, empathetic, determined and above all Open. That’s Sam. She is a great strategist because she starts at the problem and has the rare capacity to hold it up in her mind and examine it from all angles without bringing in prejudices and preconceptions. Her solutions are elegant and her rationale is always well thought through. What makes Sam brilliant though is that she is “simpatico”..people open up and tell her things that they wouldn’t dream of otherwise and she manages to get to the heart of human motivations. She is straight as an arrow, highly loyal and has a great sense of humour. I would highly recommend Sam to anyone who is looking for a superstar to work with
Sangeeta Leach, Director, The Leach Partnership
“Approaches everything she does with unwavering enthusiasm”
We worked with Sam on a number of projects and we were impressed by her absolute professionalism and her ability to deliver research and recommendations that make an impact. She understands the fundamentals of good qualitative research, always looks at things with a strategic eye and invariably thinks creatively about the implications for a client. Sam has that important ability to not only engage people from all walks of life, but to genuinely understand their perspective and translate it into something that makes a real difference to clients. Overlaid on her considerable research skills and her passion for strategic planning, Sam is also highly personable and approaches everything she does with unwavering enthusiasm.
Marc L’Huillier – Partner Advisory EY/ Managing Partner, EY Sweeney
“Personable, intelligent and compassionate person who has the ability to lead and inspire people… destined to do great things”
Samantha is a motivated, honest and very hard working person who leads by example in both her professional and her private life. She regularly demonstrates her resilience and willingness to tackle challenges with a resolve and energy that is inspiring to those around her.
As a key part of our leadership team Samantha contributed greatly to the strategic repositioning of the company as we realised our own social responsibility and further our work in the third sector. This is where Sam’s passion lies: in doing real work that enables her to contribute to the development of a more civil society. In recent years Sam has led projects for the Red Cross, Australian Diabetes Council, and Media Access Australia.
Samantha is a very personable, intelligent and compassionate person who has the ability to lead and inspire people. She has a calm and very considered approach which belies the determined and passionate characteristics that underlie her personality. Sam’s great interpersonal skills, and her easy but very professional manner inspires the confidence of our clients which assists greatly in the success of the projects that she worked on.
Sam is the kind of person whom I feel, is destined to do great things. Her professional background and training, combined with her wide range of personal attributes, equip her to contribute to the improvement of a range of social and environmental issues which challenge our society today.
Melissa Reader, Founder Purpose Agency & CEO Life Circle
“We nurture our creativity when we release our inner child.
Let it run and roam free.
It will take you on a brighter journey.”
― Serina Hartwell