Dear Friends of ForWords Literacy Lab,

Summer is here!
We have just finished wrapping up our literacy programs at San Rafael High School (SRHS), San Francisco School of Arts and Technology *, Helms Middle School, and Huckleberry Youth Services. ForWords OutLoud, our Saturday program, has been a huge success and we are already anticipating more students this fall.

While we prepare for the upcoming academic year, we are also excited to introduce our newest project, ForWords Summer Bridge to High School.

This brand new program is designed for incoming SRHS 9th grade students who are primarily 1st generation in the US and facing many challenges as they navigate through scho
ol. Statistics show that when E nglish Language Learners (ELLs) don't do well in 9th grade they are unlikely to be on track for graduation.

Summer Bridge focuses on building students' Communication Literacy
(reading, writing, and speaking) and Digital Technology Literacy skills to help them prepare for and succeed in a new school environment.

The program also pairs them with former ForWords Literacy Lab students who help to mentor and provide additional support for these young men and women.

*In partnership with UC Berkeley's graduate teacher training program, MUSE.
FWLL students in Ashland attending the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
This past April, 25 FWLL students, interns, staff, and chaperones traveled to Ashland, Oregon to attend the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, participate in workshops, engage in creative projects relating to the event, and hear lectures.
FWLL students worked on their own performances in a workshop in Ashland.
The students saw incredible performances, including Great Expectations, a modern rendition of Twelfth Night, and the world premiere of River Bride, a play based on Brazilian folklore and written by San Francisco-based author Marisela Trevino Orta.

The trip to Ashland also provided our students with the opportunity to travel out of state (for most this was their first time!) and to get a sense of life in college by staying in the dorms and eating at the dining commons at Southern Oregon University.
FWLL students and staff run the Marin Human Race.
On May 7th, our Saturday OutLoud program's students and staff ran the Marin Human Race to raise money for FWLL. They had a great time and raised over $3,000!

The Marin Human Race is a collaborative fundraiser and nonprofit celebration hosted by the Center for Volunteer & Nonprofit Leadership.
Almost 1,200 people participated in this year's event.

Join us next year on Saturday, May 13th to support FWLL and be part of this wonderful community event!  
Students presenting their work at ForWords Backstage.
Photo: William Winston, April 2016 
We also want to offer our thanks to all of you who attended the Backstage at ForWords event on April 3rd at Terrapin Crossroads and for your generous support of our students. In case you missed it, here are a few highlights:
  • ELL students in our program at SRHS read their incredible poems, exploring themes of family, pride, vulnerability, culture, and society.
  • ForWords OutLoud students performed an inspiring collaborative piece they wrote titled "We Are the Change," in which they gave voice to their hopes and ideas for a more just and equitable future.
  • Three ForWords scholarships were presented to graduating high school seniors Karen, Jasmine and Lindsey, who will be heading to college this fall, attending University of California at Merced, Sacramento State University, and San Francisco State University.

Save the Date! 
August 30th, 2016
Support FWLL at "Give Back Tuesday" at Iron Springs Brewery, 765 Center Boulevard in Fairfax, CA.
Join us on Tuesday, August 30th, at Iron Springs Brewery in Fairfax to help raise money for our literacy programs. This wonderful local pub will donate 10% of their profits to support our work. All you need to do is eat, drink, and be merry! We hope to see you there. 
Thank you for your ongoing support of our work. We look forward to sharing more stories and photos with you of our upcoming summer programs and special events, as well as our exciting plans for the coming academic year.

Visit our website at to learn more or to make a contribution to our community literacy programs.
With thanks, 
Jeff Gough, President
Gail Siegel, Executive Director
unlocking literacy

ForWords Literacy Lab  | (415) 785-7899  |