Working with teachers to identify texts that feature diverse characters and relevant narratives, PEN/Faulkner's flagship Writers in Schools program connects young people with authors (and their books) for dynamic conversations. Writing Workshops deepen the work as teaching artists help students learn about and practice their own writing through engaging skill-building sessions. In a new long-term residency, students will work directly with an expert writer to develop a sustained relationship and writing project. Together We Read brings authors, and students from different schools, into cross-cultural dialogue about books, while Nuestras Voces offers Latinx- and Hispanic-centric education programs that address systemic diversity challenges. Finally, Literary Conversations bring together the most highly acclaimed writers from all over the country to discuss the urgent issues that surround their work and let literature serve as a springboard for much-needed civil discourse.

Headquarters: DC-Ward 4

Where They Operate: DC-Citywide

Age Groups Served: Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17); Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+)

Population(s) Served: Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members; Students

Schools They Work In: We work with approximately 60 DC public and public charter schools each year.

  • Number of books donated to low-income youth over the last five years:   20,000
  • Number of local teaching artists, writers, and humanities professionals supported by PEN/Faulkner annually:   130
  • Approximate number of DC public and charter schools student participants in our education programs over the last five years:   18,000
  • Number of education sessions held in DC classrooms each year:   300
  • Number of community members participating in our Literary programs each year:   4800

Awards & Recognition

In 2019, PEN/Faulkner won a Literacy Award from the Library of Congress.

PEN/Faulkner’s institutional supporters include the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH), Cafritz Foundation, Share Fund, Humanities DC, Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs, Arts Forward Fund, Scottish Rite Foundation, Whitehead Foundation, Nora Roberts Foundation, Find Your Light Foundation, and more.


Budget (FY2023)

  • $3 million or higher
  • $1 million to $3 million
  • The current budget for The PEN/Faulkner Foundation is: $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

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