Studies show that science museums are critically important elements of our educational infrastructure. People who are disadvantaged economically are less likely to have access to opportunities found in museums, which substantially undermines their learning and chances for school success. We address this challenge through a series of specific programs (described below), and by offering Museum admission and education programs at fees that are set below the actual cost.
I want to thank you for expanding Montshire's Warm Welcome program. This will allow low income families to have even more opportunities to experience your amazing museum. What a wonderful opportunity for children and their families who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford to attend.
• Reduced Admission: The Museum is now offering $2 admission and $15 memberships to anyone who shows a Vermont or New Hampshire EBT or Medicaid Card, or who qualifies for the Free or Reduced Price School Meals program in our two states. This new initiative, which began January 2014, expands accessibility by supporting families who are not connected with a particular human service agency. Download a flyer to help us spread the word! (Some restrictions apply.)
• Free Passes: The Montshire Museum partners with more than 110 human service agencies in Vermont and New Hampshire to provide free Museum admission passes to their clients. Over 3,000 people take advantage of this opportunity each year. Email us for an application to add your agency to this program.
• Scholarships: The Montshire actively raises scholarship funds to ensure that low-income children can participate in Summer Camp and other educational programs. Many scholarship recipients are referred through our agency partners; others apply directly to the Museum for support.
• Memberships: To encourage families to return for multiple visits, the Montshire offers $15 memberships to families who show an EBT or Medicaid Card, or who qualify for the Free or Reduced Price School Meals program. (Some restrictions apply.)
• Special Fees for Schools: For nearly 10 months of every year, K-12 schools are the Montshire’s strongest link to our region’s children. To ensure that all schools have affordable access to the Museum, we have established specially reduced rates for school groups that are just 56% of the actual cost. And for four weeks each winter, underfunded schools can take advantage of the opportunity to visit the Museum for just $2 per student.
• Support for Other Nonprofits: As another way to strengthen our community, the Montshire provides support and Museum access to other charitable organizations. We offer complimentary use of our program room for educational purposes, and free admission passes for special events and fundraising activities.
Charitable gifts are essential to making these programs possible. Funding for the Warm Welcome program comes from:
• Donor-level memberships and unrestricted annual gifts
• Designated gifts and grants
• Auction “Fund a Need” donations
• Montshire Access Fund—a special fund within Montshire’s endowment
• Keller Family Fund for Special Needs
• The Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation