Ch-ch-changes are happening at the Writers' Exchange.

Once upon a time, in a faraway land (actually, it was 2011 in Vancouver), Sarah Maitland had a vision for a safe and fun program where inner-city kids could work on their reading and writing skills with the help of awesome literacy mentors.  After seven years, Sarah, our Co-Founder and Creative Director, has achieved that initial vision and is leaving the Writers’ Exchange to pursue new adventures. We will miss her and are forever grateful for her tireless work in turning her vision into a reality for 700 inner-city kids each year! 

Sarah wanted us to share this message with you: 

“It is with five million emotions that I am stepping down from my role at the Writers’ Exchange. I’m super sad because I won't get to see the kids' smiling faces every day, but I’m super proud to know that the Writers' Exchange will continue to thrive, thanks to our amazing team. 

“When Jen and I first started WE, my dream was to build a strong, sustainable organization that could provide inner-city kids with the literacy support they needed—and then I hoped that one day I could leave the organization in the hands of a creative, energetic team. Now WE is thriving, with hundreds of kids receiving support from caring volunteer mentors and our amazing staff, all supported by our wonderful board and FANTASTIC supporters (that’s you!). My work here, as they say, is done.
“But the work of WE is far from done. Unfortunately, there will always be inner-city kids in Vancouver who need a safe place to go to practise their literacy skills in a way that’s fun for them, not scary. I will FOREVER support WE, both with moral support and my own financial donations, and I hope that you will continue to support the kids along with me for years and years, until we don't even need literacy anymore because we all communicate telepathically (which might be a while, so please keep those donations rolling in!).

“Thank you so much for making these past seven years so great—for me, and, most importantly, for the kids!”

Since Sarah started the Writers’ Room in 2011 and co-founded the Writers’ Exchange in 2013, more than 2,000 at-risk kids in Vancouver have received over 70,000 hours of literacy support with the help of 760 volunteer mentors. WOW!

WE will always build upon Sarah’s awesome vision, hard work, and infinite passion, because there are many, many more kids who deserve the chance to get excited about reading, writing and their own potential.

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Jennifer MacLeod Co-Founder and Programs Director

Anna Forst
Managing Director


Jennifer MacLeod
Co-Founder and Programs Director

PS – If Sarah was always your point of contact, we promise that when you connect with us, we’ll try to be as funny and smart and kind and creative and wacky as she is. We hope you know you can email Anna Forst or Jennifer MacLeod anytime - we love to talk about what the kids are doing!