For millennia, Bulgarian lands have been a meeting place of civilizations that left a profound mark on the modern world. Some of the most impressive cultural artifacts of this rich past are the antique mosaics that once graced early Christian basilicas and the elite’s residences and can now be found under many of Bulgaria’s cities.

The Bishop’s Basilica of Philippopolis and its mosaics are being brought back to life in what has become one of the largest restoration projects in Bulgaria in decades, with support from the America for Bulgaria Foundation, Plovdiv Municipality, the Ministry of Culture, and thousands of volunteers. In 2019, a modern cultural complex housing the Basilica’s mosaics will open its doors to the public. Educational programs, interactive exhibits, and community activities will introduce visitors of all ages to the 1500-year-old artworks and the history that inspired their creation.



On September 26, 2018 active citizens and representatives of businesses in Plovdiv announced their decision to establish the Friends of the Basilica Foundation. The mission of the foundation is to turn the Bishop’s Basilica in a lively cultural center, attracting children and adults, locals and visitors from Bulgaria and the world. The first initiative of Friends of the Basilica is the Adopt a Bird campaign. Anyone can choose between 100 mosaics of birds and adopt one through donating funds.

The Adopt a Bird initiative aims to motivate the business community and general public to join efforts and raise funds to support the long-term functioning of the Basilica complex and its community programs. Concerts, travelling exhibits, shows, children programs and scientific conferences will be organized using funds from the Friends of the Basilica.



The first step is to pick one of the birds. Bonny Bird, Dapple Belly, Red Crown, Bigbeaks – the feathered creatures you will encounter on the following pages will be your guides in discovering these lands’ millennia-long history.

The second step is to donate BGN 5,000 (approximately USD 3,000).

Please transfer the money to the following account, opened and controlled by the America for Bulgaria Foundation:

Account Holder: America for Bulgaria Foundation
IBAN: BG45BGUS91601000745402

After the Friends of the Basilica Foundation is officially registered, all funds will be transferred and controlled by the Friends of the Basilica.

For additional information please contact Katya Staykova, Executive Director of the Friends of the Basilica Foundation at +359 886 300 333 or via e-mail:



To honor your contribution to the cause, we will make your name visible in the following manner:

  • A sign with the name of your company or your name on the donors’ wall at the Bishop’s Basilica;
  • Announcement of your company or your name at the opening ceremony;
  • Listing your company’s brand or your name in all press-releases regarding the opening of the Bishop’s Basilica;
  • Listing your brand or your name under the bird you adopted in the internet page of the campaign;
  • Presenting you with a framed photo of the bird you adopted;
  • Using the bird you adopted in advertising materials of your company for the term of donation;
  • Free invitations for events at the Bishop’s Basilica – concerts, exhibits, kids programs;
  • Invitations for the Donors Gala.

After you adopt a bird you can change its name: Bonny Bird, Dapple Belly, Red Crown, Bigbeaks can become Brave, United or Successful. The Friends will work with you to adapt the name.

Long-term donors (5 to 10 years) will be given the opportunity to be members of the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Basilica Foundation and to have a free corporate event at the Basilica once a year.

Bulgarians say that a bird landing on your shoulder brings good luck. Catch some luck—adopt a bird.