Our Mission and Vision

Mission and Vision
Grace Institute nurtures the human spirit through the arts and seeks to build intercultural appreciation and understanding in an open and inclusive community.

As an organization that believes art is a common human language with the capacity to transform individuals and entire communities, Grace Institute is dedicated to creating opportunities for: creativity, a way in which the unique gifts of each individual are expressed; choice, an avenue by which individuals are empowered to explore and develop their unique gifts; collaboration, how we might discover that we need each other’s perspective in order to meet the changing demands of our lives; and community, what can happen when we realize that the true riches of our families, lives,  and  the world, are the diverse gifts of communities  joined together.

Committed to being an ever-evolving and culturally responsive arts-focused community, Grace Institute continues to cultivate its signature program, Grace Art Camps, while developing ways to engage with art and community through-out the year.

Our Story
Established in 1995 and individually incorporated in 2005, Grace Institute is a secular outgrowth of a long-term commitment by Grace Memorial Episcopal Church to meet the community’s needs for urban livability and arts education. In response to declining funding for arts education in Portland Public Schools, Grace Institute developed Grace Art Camp as well other art programs for children, youth and adults:  Grace Academy, Grace Art Camps, Grace Arts for Peace Camp, Spring Camp, and Grace Art Classes.

Since 1997 Grace Institute has offered a vibrant summer camp experience unlike any other in the city of Portland, Oregon.  Grace Art Camps, the signature program of Grace Institute, has flourished from one week and 30 children, to seven weeks serving over 1,200 children, in 2016, in addition to two smaller three-day seasonal camps. For a glimpse into Art Camp, see the Oregonian’s 2011 article, Portland’s Grace Art Camp, a Secular Project with Sacred Roots, honoring Art Camp’s 15th anniversary. For more about Grace Institute’s origins and previous programming, click here.

Statement of Nondiscrimination
Grace Institute and Grace Art Camps do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion or creed, gender, gender expression, age, national origin or ancestry, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and termination of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services.