Chapter 510’s Epic Journey Home:
Expansion and Growth Campaign

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Our Mission

To help Oakland youth in need to write with confidence and joy.

Chapter 510 is a youth writing center made in Oakland, California. Side-by-side with local educators, our teaching artists and volunteers provide a supportive community and safe space for Oakland youth aged 6-18 so they can bravely write and publish their own words.

We believe that when kids and teens can confidently write, they transform themselves and their communities for the better.


The EPIC Campaign

Like any interesting and well-written literary hero, Chapter 510 is facing an epic journey. Next year, we will set out from the comforts of our writing center where we have served Oakland youth for the last three years, and temporarily re-establish ourselves at a new space while our building is razed and rebuilt to better serve the needs of our Oakland community.

To fund this odyssey, we are launching a multi-year comprehensive campaign to invest in our future sustainability while helping us increase exponentially the number of youth we serve each year.


The Budget

Our Goal: $3,000,000 over three years

$600,000 will grow our programming's reach from 500 to 2,500 Oakland youth within three years, including the launch of daily after-school tutoring upon return to our new writing center in the fall of 2020.

The Building
$700,000: 3,500 sq./ft. build-out from demolition to completion
$150,000: Custom Dept. of Make Believe interactive machinery, pneumatic tube system + writing center “interconnected writing fort” structure
$100,000: Architectural and interior design fees
Total Building Budget: $950,000

$1,000,000 in staffing development over three years: Staff will grow from 2 FTE founders to 7 FTE staff members & 3 FTE AmeriCorps Service Members.

$450,000 over three years for operational management, fundraising, business insurance, moving costs, rent, communications, and oversight of the build-out and relocation. 


The EPIC Timeline

IN 2018

  • April: Chapter 510 launched our EPIC Journey (the campaign) at a party hosted by Frances Hellman and Warren Breslau where Warren announced their lead $500,000 campaign commitment. Thank you, Frances and Warren!

  • June: Hire a part-time Development Director to lead the campaign.

  • August: Hire 3 AmeriCorps service members.

  • 2018: Program expands from serving 500 to 1,000 young writers in Oakland.

IN 2019

  • March: Move to a temporary space - Deposits and fees for contractors and architect for the build out + moving expenses = $350,000.

  • April: Break ground!

  • 2019: Programs continue in schools and at our center (depending on the space we secure for our temporary home).

  • 2019: Hire a Director of Programs and a Volunteer & Community Engagement Manager.

  • 2019: Programs grow in schools and at our center to serving 1,500 young writers!

IN 2020

  • TBD: Our space is completed and we move back in between March-August, depending on construction realities.

  • 2020: Fees to complete the build out will be approximately $625,000, including a custom build-out of the Dept. of Make Believe, a pneumatic tube system, machined interactives, and a writing fort structure in the writing center.

  • August: Hire a Store Manager/Communications Manager & an After-School Program Coordinator.

  • 2020: Programs at full steam: programming 6 days a week with the launch of our free after-school tutoring center, Saturday writing workshops, field trips at our center twice weekly, spring and summer writing camps, in-school book projects and in-school mentoring at MetWest: over 2,500 students served annually.

IN 2021

  • TBD: We did it! Our epic journey home will be complete. By December of 2021, we will have built Oakland’s very first magical writing center, grown our staff from 2 to 11 and our annual budget from $350,000 to $850,000. We will have increased by 2,000 students the number of Oakland youth we serve annually, thanks to the generosity of donors like you.

  • We will continue to deepen our programs and partnerships with OUSD schools, adding middle school partnerships and programming, and start planning to open dedicated writing rooms at Acorn Elementary and Hoover Elementary.


Companions for the Journey

Kindness and sacrifice recur as common traits among our hero’s travel companions. Chapter 510 invites you to join us on our EPIC adventure.

We believe that it’s crucial to give credit to those who help Chapter 510 make its way home again. Donors who give at least $50,000 over three years will be eligible to have their partnership memorialized at our new home.

Suggested naming opportunities include:

Writing Lab: $500,000
Bookbinding Studio: $250,000
Stage: $100,000
Pneumatic Tube System: $100,000
Foundation (floor tiles/wall): $50,000

Please consider making your investment in Oakland’s young people today. To donate, give online, mail a check made out to Chapter 510 (with EPIC Journey written in the Memo field) to 2301 Telegraph Avenue, Oakland, CA 94612, or email Janet Heller ( to arrange a time to talk about a larger investment. 

Chapter 510 is a 501(c)(3)nonprofit organization with an EIN # of 47-2793034. Chapter 510 is a proud part of the 826 National Development Process. As a separate 501(c)3 working to bring 826 National network programming to Oakland, Chapter 510 is not directly affiliated with 826 Valencia and its operations.

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