The Memory Project is a youth arts organization that promotes intercultural understanding and kindness between children around the world.  We have been fortunate to have 300,000 youth in 55 countries involved in our school-based programs since 2004. 

Marble Surface

Thank you for being here.

My name is Ben, and I started the Memory Project as a student at the University of Wisconsin in 2004.  I was passionate about connecting youth around the world through art to help build cultural understanding and international kindness.  Today I continue to be inspired by all of the art teachers and students who bring their own passions to these collaborative efforts.

The Memory Project gets its name from its first intention, which was to provide handmade, heartfelt portraits as special memories to children in orphanages.  Now our intention has expanded to touching the lives of youth around the world facing many types of challenges, while opening our hearts and minds so they can touch our lives in return. 


Together we are using art to reach a distant destination: a kinder world in which all youth see themselves in one another regardless of differences in their appearance, culture, religion, or the circumstances of their lives.  Millions of other people in our society are traveling towards this same destination by many different methods.  I like to think that everyone in the Memory Project is traveling together in a ship made of art.  For all who believe in the existence of that kinder world on the horizon, it is impossible to turn the ship around.  We would love for you to join us.


- Ben Schumaker

Our history in videos