826 National

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826 National
826 National logo (2015).png
FoundersNínive Clements Calegari and Dave Eggers
TypeNon-profit organization
Headquarters44 Gough Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
Laura Brief
Main organ
Advisory board
AffiliationsScholarMatch, McSweeney's

826 National is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping students, ages 6–18, improve their expository and creative writing skills at eight locations across the United States.[1] The chapters include 826 Valencia in San Francisco, 826NYC in Brooklyn, 826LA in Los Angeles, 826CHI in Chicago, 826Michigan (serving Ann Arbor, Detroit, and Ypsilanti), 826 Boston in Boston, 826DC in Washington, DC, and 826 New Orleans.[2]


The flagship chapter of 826, 826 Valencia, opened in 2002, at 826 Valencia St. in the Mission District of San Francisco. The original address inspired the name 826 National. It was co-founded by educator Nínive Clements Calegari and author Dave Eggers, who also founded the independent publishing house McSweeney's.

In April 2010, Dave Eggers founded ScholarMatch, a nonprofit organization that aims to make higher education possible for underserved youth. ScholarMatch coordinates students with various resources, donors, scholarships, and universities to aid in the financial undertaking of pursuing a college education.

Following the success and impact of 826 Valencia in its first two years, 826NYC opened its doors in 2004. In 2005, 826michigan, 826LA, and 826CHI were established, respectively. In 2007, 826 Boston joined the growing network, followed by 826DC, which opened in 2010.[3]

In 2008, a national office was established to support the chapters and act as a central hub of the 826 network. 826 National is an independent nonprofit organization that provides strategic leadership, administration, and other resources to ensure the success of its writing and tutoring centers.

In addition, there are fifty 826-inspired organizations across the globe. 826 Digital support educators through 826 Digital, a new online pay-what- you-wish platform designed to help teach and ignite a love of writing. 826 National is the hub of the 826 Network: facilitating collaboration and alignment among our chapters, and bringing the 826 Network model and approach to new communities.

Store themes[edit]

Each 826 National store has an unusually-themed retail outlet. These include:

826 Boston Greater Boston Bigfoot Research Institute
826 Chicago The Wicker Park Secret Agent Supply Company[4]
826NYC The Brooklyn Superhero Supply Company[5]
826LA The Time Travel Mart[6]
826 Valencia The Pirate Supply Store & King Carl's Emporium[7]
826michigan Liberty Street Robot Supply & Detroit Robot Factory[8]
826 New Orleans New Orleans Haunting Supply Co.[9]
826DC Tivoli's Astounding Magic Supply

The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas, formerly called 826 Seattle, operates the Greenwood Space Travel Supply Company.[10][11]

Volunteer network[edit]

826 National programs are supported by over 6,000 active volunteers[12] of various professions, ages, cultures, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Volunteers are trained by staff members for various areas of 826 programs: after-school tutoring, the Young Authors Book Project, field trips, in-school programs, and writing workshops. Volunteers can also help in administrative jobs, such as website maintenance and graphic design.


  1. ^ "Creative Writing Centers Help Students Become Published Authors". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved November 6, 2011.
  2. ^ "Writing Program Supplements US Public Education". Voice of America. Retrieved December 2, 2011.
  3. ^ Holland, Sally (December 7, 2010). "Hidden tutoring centers provide 'unnatural' education". CNN.
  4. ^ Pang, Kevin (19 April 2007). "How to be a spy". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 19 December 2012.
  5. ^ "Brooklyn Superhero Supply Co". www.superherosupplies.com.
  6. ^ "826LA". 826LA. n.d. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  7. ^ "826 Valencia". 826 Valencia. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  8. ^ "Onward Robots, Online Store for 826michigan". Onward Robots - 826michigan's Online Store.
  9. ^ "826 New Orleans". 826 New Orleans. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  10. ^ "About Fearless Ideas | The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas | A nonprofit writing and communications center". fearlessideas.org. Retrieved November 2, 2018. By 2014 with long waiting lists for all programs and an impressive list of awards, including the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award presented by First Lady Michelle Obama, 826 Seattle decided to expand its offerings and locations and to rebrand under its new name: The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas.
  11. ^ Constant, Paul (November 5, 2014). "826 Seattle Changes Its Name to the Bureau of Fearless Ideas". The Stranger. Retrieved November 2, 2018. Starting next week, 826 Seattle would be replaced with a new nonprofit called the Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas, or BFI for short.
  12. ^ "826 National: Volunteers". 826national.org. Retrieved July 20, 2015.

External links[edit]