WITS promotes literacy and a love of learning in elementary public school students in Chicago through a volunteer-powered, outcomes-based portfolio of programs. Our programs connect communities and break down barriers through mobilizing corporate and community volunteers to "give back" to neighborhood schools and by exposing low-income Chicago children to caring adults from diverse backgrounds.
Alongside our teachers and school administrators WITS works to provide the critical support that our students need to set them on a path toward academic achievement. WITS believes that literacy is an essential building block to developing a love of learning and that excelling as a reader will shape a life for success.
There is an inherent value in consistent one-on-one mentorship. The mentor relationships developed through WITS programming empower the students and enrich the lives of both students and volunteers. Today, WITS is privileged to serve 2,500 students in 27 elementary schools thanks to the generosity and support of 48 partnering organizations, 1,700 volunteers, and countless donors.
WITS offers a portfolio of six different programs: Early Childhood, Mid-day Mentoring, Workplace Mentoring, Saturday Tutoring, Classroom Assistants, and, our newest program, the Early Childhood Summer Program. Our volunteer base consists of corporate and government employees, college students, retirees, and community members of all ages and backgrounds. In its third decade of providing tutoring and mentoring services, WITS remains dedicated to training, placing, and transporting volunteers into the Chicago Public Schools.
Over the years, WITS has been endorsed by former President Bill Clinton, former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, U.S. Secretary of Education and former Chicago Public Schools CEO Arne Duncan, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, former U.S. Secretary of Education Richard Riley, and the Chicago Public School Reform Team.
For more information on how to get involved, please fill out our General Inquiry Form and a WITS staff member will be in touch with you shortly.