Books on Wheels provides free books and free bicycle repair to communities around Richmond and the United States to promote literacy and an active lifestyle. Their services are open to everyone, but they concentrate on at-risk youth in low-income neighborhoods. Books on Wheels partners with community organizations to set up days and times when their brightly painted bus will arrive with free books and free bike repair.
James River Writers offers monthly informational talks, informal gatherings, an annual conference, and other events to connect and inspire aspiring writers, professional authors, and passionate readers. Check them out even if you aren’t a writer. Their newsletter features Richmond events for fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and performing arts.
The Podium Foundation works with Richmond’s public high school students to bolster writing skills and creative expression through extracurricular, system-wide writing programs and quasi-professional experiences. Podium extends professional support for the city’s teachers and creates a literary journal to showcase the students’ work in short fiction, short memoir, opinion, poetry, and illustration. The journal is the sole product of the students – writing, illustrating, designing, and editing – accomplished under Podium mentorship. The Podium Foundation: “where youth take a stand.”
The Visual Arts Center of Richmond encourages people of all ages and skill levels to participate in the visual arts. The Visual Arts Center offers art classes and workshops in a dozen areas, including fiction writing. Art After School and A Space of Her Own programs give Richmond public school children a place to explore their creativity while learning self-discipline and focus. Free Side by Side Saturdays workshops are available to intergenerational pairings of parents/ grandparents and children. Exhibitions and the Craft and Design Show let you enjoy other artists’ work and even take some home.