A book can
change a story.

WePAC mobilizes volunteers to reopen libraries and
provide academic mentoring in Philadelphia public schools.

VOLUNTEER

Recent News

WePAC’s Spring 2018 Update

Despite a few months of transition here at WePAC, we've been working as hard as ever to make sure our programs are running smoothly! We are excited to share updates on what's been going on, and some tips and tricks from our libraries! Read our Spring Newsletter...

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On Air with Cherri Gregg: National Library Week

In celebration of 2018's National Library Week (April 8th - April 14th), WePAC's Executive Director Anisha Sinha sat down to chat with Cherri Gregg at KYW Newsradio about WePAC's efforts to improve school libraries here in Philadelphia. This year's theme for National...

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Two Local Authors Visit WePAC Libraries

This March, WePAC was lucky to host not one, but two, local Philadelphia authors for Library Cafes! Becky Birtha, author of Lucky Beans, joined students at Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School to share her latest children's book, Far Apart, Close in Heart. Her newest...

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Bruce Self and Kathy Hanrahan Join WePAC Board

Please join WePAC in welcoming Bruce Self and Kathy Hanrahan to its Board of Directors - we believe that both Bruce and Kathy will add tremendous value to WePAC's mission and work in Philadelphia.   Formerly the Development Manager at the Ed Snider Youth Hockey...

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Hello, From WePAC’s New Executive Director!

Dear WePAC Friends and Supporters, I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself to you, and thank you all for the warm welcome I have received since starting earlier this month. I've been in Philadelphia for almost eight years, and have spent most of my time here...

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WePAC’s library programs empower young readers.

ONCE UPON A TIME there was a library in every Philadelphia school, and children learned the joy of reading through exposure to story hours with librarians and books to take home and read throughout the week. Today more than 95% of Philadelphia public elementary schools lack a functioning library.

ENTER WePAC! Since 2009 WePAC has committed roughly 10,000 hours per year to reopening, staffing and operating volunteer-run libraries in Philadelphia public elementary schools, with a large and talented volunteer force providing library services and mentoring to thousands of children each week. This academic year we are running libraries in 14 schools with a related reading mentoring program in several.

IN OUR VISION, every Philadelphia child will be empowered with the literacy skills vital to the success of that child and the prosperity of our community. WePAC’s programs focus primarily on children in grades K-3, during the early and critical years of their educational careers, although we endeavor to extend programming to all students in a school, including older grades.

WePAC volunteers encourage curiosity and foster a lifelong love of reading. Our overarching goal is to bring books, reading, and libraries to low-income schoolchildren who have lost their library or who never had one.

Started in the 2003-2004 academic year as an outgrowth of an urban outreach project between Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church and many civic groups, WePAC today is a wholly-independent and non-sectarian 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.

What We Do

Run libraries in Philadelphia public schools

WePAC has reopened previously closed school libraries across West and Southwest Philadelphia and the East Falls/Roxborough area. This school year, we are bringing library services to nearly 5,000 students in 14 schools.

Bring thousands of books into schools

Through generous donations, we have placed tens of thousands of books in our school libraries, circulating an estimated 127,000 stories a year!

Expose children to great literature and stories

WePAC’s dedicated volunteers read aloud to children and help them select and check out books. They get to know what types of books their students like. Our volunteers bring school libraries to life!

Provide Library Buddies for individual students

In addition to operating school libraries, WePAC pairs adult mentors (Library Buddies) with individual students who benefit from extra one-on-one support during literacy instruction.

Why We Do it

%

Philadelphia public elementary schools lacking a functioning library

%

Students who will drop out of school before graduating

End of grade at which reading ability is a key predictor of dropout risk