The Telling Room

Write. Share. Inspire.

Portland, ME   |  www.tellingroom.org

Mission

The Telling Room is a literary arts education nonprofit whose mission is to empower youth through writing and share their voices with the world. Focused on young writers ages 6 to 18, we seek to build confidence and provide real audiences for our students. We work with students who may be reluctant to write as well as those who already identify as writers, including children and teens who are a part of Maine's growing community of immigrants and refugees, those with emotional and behavioral challenges, students struggling in mainstream classrooms, homeschoolers enthusiastic to join a creative community, incarcerated youth, and passionate young writers who benefit from support beyond what their schools are able to provide. All core programs are 100% free to students and their families.

Ruling year info

2006

Executive Director

Kristina Powell

Main address

225 Commercial St Suite 201

Portland, ME 04101 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

74-3136956

NTEE code info

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

Printing, Publishing (A33)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Young Writers & Leaders

Young Writers & Leaders (YWL) is a free, afterschool literary arts program for international multilingual high school students. We select 32 students a year through a competitive application and interview process to participate for nine months. The program helps improve these students’ writing skills, academic performance, social and emotional wellbeing, and increases their chances of success, now and in the future.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents

Residencies provide the opportunity to work with us for an extended period–usually 12 sessions–on an intensive writing curriculum built around our yearly theme or a subject your classroom or school is exploring. We typically run eight to ten residencies each year in area schools. In these sessions, students work extensively with writing mentors and have their original writing published in a 6x9 inch, professional grade chapbook that is unveiled at a community celebration at your school.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

The Telling Room's Young Emerging Author (YEA) fellowship is our writing and publishing program that offers successful applicants the chance to plan, write, edit, design, and publish their own books in a single year. In weekly sessions at The Telling Room, fellows work collaboratively, writing and sharing their work, and independently with professionals in the writing and publishing industries, including authors, editors, agents, designers, and publishers.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents

When classrooms leave the school and come to a field trip at The Telling Room's downtown Portland writing center, students join us for a morning of creative activity, expression and get the full experience of working as writers with their classmates and teachers! At the end of the trip, each writer departs with his or her own creation and the kind of skills that bolster performance in school, across all disciplines. Our Field Trip curricula are geared toward learners of all ages and abilities. These programs are designed to foster young writers—those who already love writing and those who come to it more reluctantly—so that all participants can benefit equally.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

In this weekly, semester-based program, Publishing Workshop participants receive a working tutorial on the book publishing industry in an apprenticeship environment. They learn writing and publishing skills alongside professional editors and designers, often during the real-time editorial and production processes of Telling Room book assembly, covering topics such as book writing, development editing, copyediting, proofing, design, marketing, and printing.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents

A fun and supportive place to develop your writing among a group of peers. The Telling Room offers this free afterschool program to ages 7 through 18. We host three weekly sessions focused both by age and interest. Writers Block is a fun and supportive place to develop your writing among a group of peers. The mix of structured and unstructured writing time lets students explore and practice elements of the craft, whether fiction, essay, poetry, or visual storytelling. As in all our programs, we will encourage students to share their work. Writers Block is open to those new to The Telling Room as well as experienced writing veterans.

All sessions take place after school from 3pm to 5pm at our writing center at 225 Commercial St.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Every year since our founding, The Telling Room has undertaken a yearlong Anthology Project, a themed writing and art project that engages hundreds of youth at our writing center and in local schools. The Telling Room reinvents itself annually under the auspices of a new theme that permeates our daily writing programs for young people and sets the stage for a new set of ideas, questions, projects, and activities. These themes serve as a way for our community to learn about contemporary life from the perspective of the young people who tackle these questions and ideas in their writing with us. In the past, we have explored themes of belief, neighborhoods, place, food, and more. The theme serves as an anchor to our diverse and multi-faceted programming, and each yearlong project culminates in the publication of our yearly anthology of student writing. Our anthologies are as diverse and amazing as the students we work with!

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

We are so excited to be able to offer an exciting slate of virtual writing and publishing experiences to children and teens throughout the State of Maine in 2020. And we look forward to returning to in-person summer camps in 2021!

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work

Awards

Excellence 2009

Maine Association of Nonprofits

Financials

The Telling Room
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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The Telling Room

Board of directors
as of 07/13/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Tim Schneider

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No