Our Work

“Without inner change there can be no outer change. Without collective change, no change matters.”  ― angel Kyodo williams

Mission: Grace Institute nurtures the human spirit through the arts, fostering intercultural appreciation and understanding in an open and inclusive community.

Vision: Guided by the principle that all people are inherently creative, and that the arts have a universal capacity to transform individuals and communities, the Institute is committed to creating opportunities involving the leadership and collaboration of people from all backgrounds, ages, and abilities. Grace Institute works to cultivate a set of attitudes, perspectives, behaviors and policies that continuously promote equity, diversity, inclusion and cultural responsiveness.

Core Values: Respectful, Responsible, Resourceful, and Receptive


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 and unique summer camp experience in 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 does not discriminate in its programs or activities on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, age, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, military or veteran status, socioeconomic status, and any other marginalized characteristics protected under applicable federal, state or local law. Grace Institute is committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all member of its staff, volunteers, program attendees, and their family members.