Words Alive provides essential literacy services to San Diego County's teen population aged junior to senior in high school and early college through our flagship Adolescent Book Group program and the Westreich Scholarship. Partnering with the San Diego County Office of Education, the Juvenile Court & Community Schools and several local colleges and universities, Words Alive creates opportunities for these teens to realize academic and social success.

Adolescent Book Group

The Words Alive Adolescent Book Group program serves at-risk adolescents, most of whom have been referred to specialized community schools by the Juvenile Court system and have experienced extraordinary circumstances such as violence, pregnancy and homelessness. Each month between October and May, a facilitator and up to seven trained volunteers conduct facilitated book group discussions. Through reading and sharing opinions about books, book group participants enhance self-esteem, reading levels, vocabulary, critical thinking and literary analysis.

Westreich Scholarship

The Words Alive Westreich Scholarship Program was created through the generosity of Ruth Westreich, a noted San Diego philanthropist, and The Westreich Foundation. The program awards scholarships to past Adolescent Book Group program participants to support them in their pursuit of higher education at the college or vocational level.

Development Workshops

Words Alive offers several development workshops for both the Adolescent Book Group students and scholarship recipients. Workshops include work readiness, communication, resume building, scholarship, healthy living and team building.