Thanks to $400 in donations provided through GlobalGiving, 826DC is continuing to work toward achieving the goals described in our project plan. We have hosted a number of field trips, held writing workshops, and provided drop-in tutoring and writing help. With the help of a dedicated group of interns and volunteers, we are working hard to keep students engaged and excited through the end of the school year.
Our after-school tutoring program consistently has an average daily attendance of 35 to 40 students, many of whom attend four days per week. Our volunteers are implementing individualized learning plans designed during the first part of the academic year, and are continuing to adjust those plans as the students make progress.
Reading All Stars, our Saturday one-on-one reading program at Tubman Elementary School, is currently serving 60 students. Each week, students read with their tutors and receive help with reading and writing skills.
We have hosted 45 Storytelling & Bookmaking field trips for 915 students from 12 different schools (including Tubman ES, SEED PCS, Oyster-Adams Bilingual School, DC Bilingual PCS, Washington Yu-Ying PCS, and Center City PCS). During our field trips, a class of students comes to our center to write their own book together in two hours with the aid of our talented volunteers. Each student writes his or her own ending to the story and takes home a copy of the finished product.
Our in-school sessions have also been in high demand. This school year, we worked with sophomores and juniors in the Simon Scholars program at the Cesar Chavez Public Charter School – Parkside Campus on essay writing skills. We also provided 60 students with an in-school college application personal statement writing workshop at Cardozo High School and Duke Ellington School for the Arts.
In addition, we are wrapping up the fifth iteration of our flagship program, the Young Authors’ Book Project. We are working with two English classes at Wilson HS, the poetry club at Ballou HS, and a journalism class at Duke Ellington School for the Arts. From October through April, we met with students for writing workshops, each focusing on a different literary technique or form, including abstraction, tone, and haiku. As we move into April, students are editing their work, and are transforming their pieces into a printed book. We are currently finalizing the design and finding a printer. The anthology, titled The Weight of the Day Surrounds My Body will be released May 22nd. We are excited to have award-winning author Dinaw Mengestu contributing the forward for the book.
In the coming months, we will continue our aggressive fundraising strategy. We have a number of fundraising events planned for the spring and are confident that we can continue to break fundraising records.