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Butterfly Project Grants: Grant applications for the 2023-2024 school year are now closed. Please check back for information about the 2024-2025 school year!

About the Butterfly Project: Participants of all ages in the Butterfly Project learned about children who died in the Holocaust and received a card with the story of a specific child. The participants then paint ceramic butterflies, inspired by the story of that child. The international movement aims to paint 1.5 million butterflies to honor the 1.5 million children killed during the Holocaust. As they learn about children lost in the Holocaust, we will challenge the community to embrace difference and to fight against bigotry and intolerance happening now. Learn More!

This program is funded by The Lipsman Family Endowment Fund in memory of Charles and Hilda Lipsman.

Butterfly Project installation at Hampton Middle School

 In years past, we have conducted Butterfly Project sessions with local schools and organizations, including 23 public libraries in 2018. We are now into the third phase of the Butterfly Project: giving schools Butterfly Project Grants to facilitate bringing The Butterfly Project to their students.

“The kids really put their heart and soul into this! I was so proud! I think it turned out beautifully and was a memorable learning experience for them. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!”

– Colleen Childs, PPS – Sunnyside
How it works:
  • Educators apply for a Butterfly Project grant from the Holocaust Center. The Holocaust Center will pay for up to two kits (covers up to 72 participants). We can only approve one request per school, per year, and we can only offer Butterfly Project scholarships for classrooms located in our outreach region, including Western Pennsylvania, and parts of Ohio and West Virginia.
  • Once approved, the Holocaust Center will submit orders to The Butterfly Project organization in San Diego and have kits shipped directly to educators.
  • Holocaust Center will send educator a lesson plan and powerpoint that they can use during painting sessions. Educators must use this or another structured curriculum to provide students with an educational component of the project.
  • Educators coordinate painting sessions and kiln firing with their students and other teachers, working with school art departments or soliciting local ceramic businesses. Acrylic painting is also acceptable in case firing is not possible, and a stipend may be issued to pay for acrylic paint.
  • Educators are responsible for coordinating the installment of the finished butterflies into a publicly displayed temporary or permanent art piece, exhibition, sculpture, etc.
  • Educators send the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh pictures of the installment.
  • We also encourage you to consider hosting a Generations Speaker or visiting the Holocaust Center on a field trip to compliment your Holocaust curriculum!
With a grant, educators receive:
  • Free ceramic butterflies and painting kits for up to 72 students sent from The Butterfly Project in California (educators contact San Diego and arrange for shipping, and the bill will be sent to the Holocaust Center)
  • A curriculum and powerpoint designed by the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh
Requirements to qualify for the grant:
  • Schools plan and implement their own Butterfly Project – Holocaust Center staff will provide resources for teachers. This provides an opportunity for cross-curricular collaboration at the school level.
  • There must be an educational component to the project.
  • Educators must coordinate a method of firing glazed butterflies (acrylic painting is also acceptable in case firing is not possible, and a stipend may be issued to pay for acrylic paint)
  • Butterflies must be publicly displayed in a temporary or permanent exhibition, art piece, etc.
  • Public, private, and charter schools are eligible for this grant. Libraries may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Apply Now:

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