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The Carle Community Fund Increases Museum Access

 The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is pleased to announce their new access initiative, The Carle Community Fund, created to make The Carle more affordable and accessible to families, schools, and educators. Established by a generous donation from Mo and Cher Willems, The Carle Community Fund expands on a previous program established by Helen and Peter Bing over 10 years ago. The fund supports the Museum and the community through three initiatives.

Visitors can gain admission through the EBT Card to Culture Program, a collaboration between the Mass Cultural Council and the Executive Office of Health and Human Services’ Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA). As a participating organization of EBT Card to Culture, The Carle offers complimentary admission for up to four people to anyone presenting an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card upon arrival to the Museum.

Non-profit social service organizations in Hampshire, Hampden, and Franklin counties supporting families can enroll in The Carle’s Access Pass Program. Upon completing an online enrollment form, participating organizations receive annual free family passes to share with their clients.

Schools and educators can apply for Carle Community Fund scholarships for both field trips and professional development workshops. Educators at Title 1 public schools (all grades, all states) are eligible to apply for field trip scholarships, which support admission and busing to The Carle between the months of October and February. Elementary teachers at Title I schools as well as all preschool teachers are also eligible to apply for professional development scholarships to attend The Carle’s educator workshops. Educators can apply for both of these scholarships online at A limited number of scholarships are available and awarded through a lottery system.

“We are so thrilled to share The Carle Community Fund throughout the area,” says Director of Education Courtney Waring. “As The Carle moves forward with a new strategic plan, one of our main goals is to make the Museum more accessible by meeting the needs and interests of audiences who may experience barriers to visiting us. The Carle Community Fund is a huge step in achieving this goal, as it deepens our impact within the community and makes The Carle more relevant to more people.”

Visit to learn more about The Carle Community Fund. To make a donation to The Carle Community Fund, please contact Director of Development Rebecca Miller Goggins at or 413-559-6308.

About The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

The mission of The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, a non-profit organization in Amherst, MA, is to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. A leading advocate in its field, The Carle collects, preserves, presents, and celebrates picture books and picture-book illustrations from around the world. In addition to underscoring the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of picture books and their art form, The Carle offers educational programs that provide a foundation for arts integration and literacy.

Eric Carle and his wife, the late Barbara Carle, co-founded the Museum in November 2002. Carle is the renowned author and illustrator of more than 70 books, including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Since opening, the 43,000-square foot facility has served more than 750,000 visitors, including 50,000 schoolchildren. The Carle houses more than 11,000 objects, including 7,300 permanent collection illustrations. The Carle has three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and schoolchildren. Bobbie’s Meadow is an outdoor space that combines art and nature. Educational offerings include professional training for educators around the country and Master’s degree programs in children’s literature with Simmons University. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday 10 am to 4 pm, Saturday 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday 12 pm to 5 pm. Open Mondays in July and August and during MA school vacation weeks. Admission is $9 for adults, $6 for children under 18, and $22.50 for a family of four. For further information and directions, call (413) 559-6300 or visit the Museum’s website at

IMAGES ARE AVAILABLE FOR REPRODUCTION For additional press information and/or images, please contact Sandy Soderberg, Marketing Manager at 413-559-6315.