916 ink916 Ink was founded in 2011 with the hopes of promoting youth literacy in Sacramento. Since then they have published the works of over 1,800 young writers, produced 3 short films that were written by kids and co-founded the Walk 4 Literacy Coalition. They have also opened The Imaginarium- a space designed to inspire creativity and promote youth writers.

According to the Literacy Project Campaign, 45 million people are functionally illiterate and cannot read past a 5th grade level. Also, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, 13% of Sacramento County residents are lacking basic literacy skills. 916 Ink has been trying to improve this literacy rates at every grade level.

“Writing and publishing provides young people with the critical tools they need to achieve success, both academically and socially,” says Katie McCleary, the Co-Founder of 916 Ink.  

916 Ink has several workshops such as “Find Your Voice”, which is for students in the 9th through 12th grade. By the end of this program students will have completed 45 hours of literacy arts instruction, created 5 works ready for publication, and have become a published author in a real book.

These programs use techniques to help create critical thinkers, readers, strong communicators and organizers.  The programs also allow the students to leave with a resume, cover letter, and professional publication to show future employers.

The Imaginarium was created with the help of the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce’s Inspire Giving committee. The space is used for creative writing classes, book-making field trips, summer camps, and resume and college writing classes for teens.

916 Ink recently participated in the Big Day of Giving and received more than $71,000 in donations and 205 new donors. These funds will go towards low-income students and will fund field trips, summer camps, and further expand their other programs.  

If you’re interested in attending a program or want to learn more about 916 Ink click here.