September 20th, 2014

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“… your program’s selection as one of the 50 finalists distinguishes [Mighty Writers] as one of the top arts-and-humanities-based programs in the country.”

—President Obama’s 2014 Committee on the Arts and Humanities



Mighty Writers Wins Edward R. Murrow Award

September 20th, 2014


Mighty Writers has won a prestigious 2015 Edward R, Murrow Award for an audio documentary titled GOING BLACK: THE LEGACY OF PHILLY SOUL RADIO.

GOING BLACK: THE LEGACY OF PHILLY SOUL RADIO, a two-hour audio documentary that aired on public radio stations around the country in 2014 and again in 2015, recaptured the glory days (1950—1979) of Black radio in Philadelphia.

>> Read more here >>

Mighty Volunteer

September 19th, 2014

MW Ned and Isaiah Mentorship 2015

Ned Scharff

Employer: Retired

Hometown: Center City (but born and raised in St. Louis, MO)

Activities at MW: Mentoring Ethan Israel, a rising 8th grader, and working to develop a college readiness program for MW middle- and highschoolers (with fellow volunteer Melissa Ash). I’ve been involved with MW for about 9 months.

Skills necessary for a MW volunteer: A little disposable time and a real joy in working with kids.

Favorite book as a kid: Peter and Wendy by J.M. Barrie — the original of “Peter Pan.”

What did I like to write as a kid: I didn’t like to write at all until grade six, when I discovered that good writing conveyed real power. After that, school newspaper editorials, essays, poetry.

>>>more from Ned, over here>>>

Mighty Volunteer

September 19th, 2014


Kenyaita Hodge

Hometown: Philadelphia

How long have you been a volunteer with MW? I began at MW West in February 2015.

How would you define your role at MW? I assist and lead Academy activities. I also help our students with homework and wherever else I am needed.

What skills are necessary for a Mighty volunteer? Be a great listener. Students love to interact and relate. The best way is through dialogue. A volunteer should also have patience, a willingness to help where needed and a passion for working with children.

What makes someone a Mighty Writer? One  eager to learn new writing techniques.. A Mighty Writer uses their creativity and encourages others to be creative..

>>>more from Kenyaita, over here>>>

Mighty Volunteer

September 18th, 2014

KhyraKhyra Lammers

School: Temple University

Hometown: Bronx, NY

How long have you been a volunteer with MW? I started as a workshop teaching assistant in fall 2013. Since fall 2014, I have been an intern at the West Philadelphia location.

How would you define your role at MW? As an older sister or a grandma among other things. Some of the students will jokingly call me that, but I always take it as a compliment. It is nice to know that I am considered a leader in their family.


“At Mighty Writers West, you really can’t miss a new face.”


What skills are necessary for a Mighty volunteer? Adaptability is key. To succeed as a volunteer you have to be able to become quickly accustomed to the newness that comes with each day.

What is unique about Mighty Writers West? The bond among the volunteers, staff and students. The students are welcoming to new faces, which makes it a great environment for all.

>>>more from Khyra, over here>>>

Mighty Volunteer

September 18th, 2014


Marianne Murphy

School: University of the Arts

Hometown: Bethesda, MD

How long have you been a MW volunteer? Since Sept. 2014

What is your role at MW? I lead workshops for 8-12 year olds that combine writing with arts & crafts.

What skills are necessary for a Mighty volunteer? It’s important to create an encouraging space where kids and teens feel safe to express anything they want in their writing.


“I love writing short stories, music, fiction for children and animation screenplays.”


What is unique about Mighty Writers? It’s a warm space full of creativity! Everyone always seems so spirited and inspired. I love it.

>>> more from Marianne, over here >>>

Books to Donate to MW?

September 17th, 2014


Care to donate your books to some Mighty kids this spring?

We’re in the market for new or lightly used books for kids, teens and adults. Some donated books are integrated into our programs for kids and teens; others populate the street libraries we set outside our sites, where they fine a home with readers of all ages.

To donate books at one of our Mighty Writers locations, please contact the program director (below) via email to arrange a drop-off time.

MW South, 1501 Christian St.
Andrea Walls, awalls@mightywriters.org

MW West, 3861 Lancaster Ave.
Annette John-Hall, ajohnhall@mightywriters.org

MW El Futuro, 1025 S. 9th St.
Laura Karabell, lkarabell@mightywriters.org


Zadie Smith On Writing

September 15th, 2014

1. When still a child, make sure you read a lot of books. Spend more time doing this than anything else.

2. When an adult, try to read your own work as a stranger would read it, or even better, as an enemy would.

3. Don’t romanticize your “vocation.” You can either write good sentences or you can’t. There is no “writer’s lifestyle.” All that matters is what you leave on the page.

4. Avoid your weaknesses. But do this without telling yourself that the things you can’t do aren’t worth doing. Don’t mask self-doubt with contempt.

5. Leave a decent space of time between writing something and editing it.

6. Avoid cliques, gangs, groups. The presence of a crowd won’t make your writing any better than it is.

7. Work on a computer that is disconnected from the Internet.

8. Protect the time and space in which you write. Keep everybody away from it, even the people who are most important to you.

9. Don’t confuse honors with achievement.

10. Tell the truth through whichever veil comes to hand, but tell it. Resign yourself to the lifelong sadness that comes from never being satisfied.


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