Job Openings >> Volunteer Mentor
Volunteer Mentor
Title:Volunteer Mentor
Job Type:N/A

Joy and Literacy in Afterschool (JLA)

Volunteer Mentor


Writopia Lab is a nonprofit organization that runs creative writing workshops for kids and teens from all backgrounds. As a part of the Writopia Lab Training Institute (WLTI), we are seeking supportive and enthusiastic volunteers with a passion for creative writing to serve as mentors for our inaugural Joy and Literacy in Afterschool program (JLA).


What is the Joy and Literacy in Afterschool Program:


The JLA, a collaboration between Writopia Lab and the Pinkerton Foundation, is designed to share Writopia’s unique, effective, and joyous creative writing workshop methods with afterschool programs serving students from low-income backgrounds throughout Manhattan. The program offers volunteers a chance to learn the Writopia method and enrich their teaching experience by working side-by-side with Writopia Instructors and Afterschool staff in various afterschool programs.


JLA Volunteer Mentors will learn Writopia workshop methodology, which includes:


  • Methods and strategies to cultivate an uncensored workshop environment that encourages critical-thinking and allows students to consider different life experiences through the lens of original fictional characters, thoughtful discourse, and coherent written narrative.

  • Effective, student-centered instructional methods to teach plot, mechanics, form, and structure.

  • Methods to help engage students in positive, constructive discussions about their work and the work of their peers.

  • Writing games and exercises designed to elicit and deepen young writers’ work.

  • Writing games and exercises designed to highlight the different elements of story and narrative and to help students execute narrative-building techniques throughout the writing process.  

  • Strategies that encourage revision and story completion.


Location and Time Commitment:


This program takes place at Afterschool programs throughout Manhattan. Applicants will be asked to complete:


  • 1.5 hours of training sessions with Writopia Lab’s staff.

  • 60 to 90 minutes one day a week with an afterschool program (Workshops meet Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Friday)



Who Can Be a JLA Mentor:


Mentorship volunteers should be supportive, enthusiastic, and thoughtful published or professional writers or students of writing. We are looking for volunteers who will take young writers seriously, who will be invested in young writers’ work, and provide positive guidance and mentorship. Experience working with students in english or creative writing, or with middle school-aged students is a plus, but not required.


How to Apply:


If you are interested in participating in the Joy and Literacy in Afterschool program, please submit your resume and 500 - 1000 word writing sample that helps us understand why you want to help young students become better more confident writers through this short form. This can be a story, an essay, or a personal statement, just feel free to be creative.

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