WritersCorps places professional writers in community settings to teach creative writing to youth. Since its inception in 1994, the program has helped nearly 18,000 young people from neighborhoods throughout San Francisco improve their literacy and increase their desire to learn.
WritersCorps is a celebrated national program that brings creative writing into the lives of youth. Each year, hundreds of young people living in some of the nation’s most economically disadvantaged neighborhoods experience firsthand the power of writing. WritersCorps’ dedicated teaching artists, all published writers themselves, employ innovative curricula that makes literature relevant to the experiences of their students. With its award-winning publications and events, WritersCorps has become a national arts and literacy model.
WritersCorps was born out of discussions between Jane Alexander, former chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and Eli Siegel, then-director of AmeriCorps. San Francisco, Washington, D.C, and Bronx, New York, were selected as the three sites for WritersCorps, chosen for these cities’ exemplary art agencies with deep community roots and for their traditions of community activism among writers. In these three cities, WritersCorps’ teaching artists, working at public schools and social service organizations, have helped young people improve their literacy and communication skills, while offering creative expression as an alternative to violence, truancy, alcohol and drug abuse.
In 1997, WritersCorps transitioned from being a federally funded program to an independent alliance that is supported by a collaboration of public and private partners. DC WritersCorps is a nonprofit organization while San Francisco and the Bronx WritersCorps are projects of the San Francisco Arts Commission and Bronx Council for the Arts, respectively.
Today, writers continue to teach in their communities, inspiring youth to not only improve their writing skills, but to develop further as thoughtful individuals, and to discover and act on their own goals in life.
San Francisco WritersCorps gratefully acknowledges the support of individual donors and the following organizations:
The MetLife Foundation Partners in Education Program is funded by MetLife Foundation and administered by the National Guild for Community Arts Education.