Your Annual Fund


Your gift to the Annual Fund directly supports VBMA’s ongoing operations, exhibitions, programs, and much more. Your generosity helps our Museum continue to be a place of inspiration, innovation, and excellence. The letter below is written by Mikayla Tupek, who has a 17-year history with our Museum.  As a beneficiary of our Museum and its countless opportunities, Mikayla shares her inspirational journey of why VBMA matters to our community.


Dear Valued Member,

     For as long as I can remember, I have connected with art in countless ways. As soon as I could hold a pencil, I began to draw, color, and create. Once I was old enough to attend Summer Art Camp at the Vero Beach Museum of Art at five years old – I was hooked and started my exciting journey with the Museum.

I took classes every summer in a variety of mediums and difficulties to expand my understanding of art and pique my interest. Because I loved spending time at the Museum, when I was 14, I volunteered for Summer Art Camp – where I spent every hour of my summer days throughout my high school years. I devoted my summer breaks to accruing volunteer hours for graduation requirements. The hours spent never felt like required coursework but rather something I could not wait to do!

In 2019, I became a Summer Art Camp Counselor – a position where I supported campers, instructors, and volunteers. This experience provided an opportunity to increase my understanding of Museum operations. In 2022, I returned to Summer Art Camp as a Coordinator, and I could not be more appreciative of the chance to organize and lead. I am beyond thankful to everyone for trusting me to assist in running a camp – it means so much to me!

In addition to being involved with Summer Art Camp, I have participated in other Museum programs, such as the Museum Art Youth Ambassadors (MAYA), an after-school program for middle and high school-aged students the VBMA offered in 2012. Currently, I work as a teaching artist for A+Art, where I help individuals with intellectual differences develop social skills, introduce art education, and expose participants to cultural experiences in a learning environment. Part of my role as a teaching artist also allows me to visit schools with the VBMA’s Museum Explorations on the Go program. Each of these programs has afforded me incredible opportunities and continues to feed my passion for art, expression, and connecting with people.

A fondness for art-making guided me to other creative outlets, such as music – which led me to my chosen career in music therapy, working with children, teens, and those with cognitive and intellectual differences. The strong bond created from working at the VBMA and with museum-goers has offered an encouraging space to develop into the person I am today and shaped the trajectory of my professional career.

The purpose of sharing my journey with you is to illustrate how art can have a lasting impact on a life. The VBMA makes art accessible for all and promotes active engagement, well-being, and making connections – all of which are necessary to make a positive difference in our community.  I hope you will join me in making a gift to the VBMA Annual Fund so that our Museum will continue to grow as a vibrant cultural gathering place for reflection, learning, and connection. You can make a difference. Thank you!

Mikayla Tupek, A+ Art Teaching Artist

P.S.  As a valued VBMA member, your Annual Fund gift will increase your impact by helping us to continue to offer art experiences to thousands of individuals of all ages, many of whom might not otherwise have access.