UPDATE: With our in-person programs on hold due to current public health conditions, our need for in-person workshop volunteers is also on hold.
To our wonderful current (and future!) volunteers, please know that we very much look forward to working with you in person again when public health conditions permit. Until then, please stay in touch, share ideas with us, volunteer online behind the scenes and with fundraising (we need your help!), and keep listening to stories!
Quick Links to get you started (or see below for more details)
- Interested in volunteering?
- Already completed a Volunteer Orientation?
Volunteering with Story Works
Story Works Alaska is made possible thanks to the efforts of many wonderful volunteers. Please take a look at the opportunities listed below to see what works best for your availability and interests.
Whether you want to participate in one of our traditional volunteer positions here in Anchorage or have another skill or idea you’d like to contribute, please contact us or submit a volunteer application!
What does a Story Coach do?
- The role of the story coach is to listen and help students develop and share true-first person stories which the students will be speaking aloud in their high school English/Language Arts classrooms.
- Story Coaches visit classrooms (typically during the school day, 7:30am-2:00pm) on one day (about midway through) during a two-week long story workshop.
- Each Story Coach works with a small group of 3-4 students as these students share stories and offer support to each other and new Story Coaches are paired with returning mentor coaches.
- Story Coach volunteers are also sometimes partnered with Teaching Fellow Story Coaches, returning Story Works alumni who are also… Story Coaches!
- *Note: Some Story Coaches also volunteer as Essay Coaches who help students with College Admissions Essay and Scholarship Essay drafts during free writing workshops. If you are interested in becoming an Essay Coach, please note this in your volunteer application.*
What kind of commitment does Story Coaching involve?
- Volunteering with Story Works is a very flexible commitment.
- Volunteer sessions are typically 1 hour or 90 min.
- Some of our volunteers volunteer just one session a year. Others volunteer at almost every workshop. What you volunteer for will depend on your availability and interest.
- Once applicants complete a volunteer application, pass a background check, and are deemed qualified, they can attend a volunteer orientation, learn more, and sign up for Story Coaching sessions.
What skills or background do you need to become a Story Coach?
- More than 100 volunteer Story Coaches from a variety of backgrounds have been involved since the program started in 2014. These Story Coaches include journalists, scientists, artists, nonprofit professionals, nurses, doctors, stay-at-home parents, retired teachers, lawyers, writers, members of the military, two mathematicians, one school board member, one DJ, one physical therapist, and a growing number of Story Works alumni. Have a background that’s not on this list? So long as it’s school-appropriate, bring it on!
- We welcome new applicants with:
- A kind ear,
- A love of stories,
- An interest in helping youth share the stories that matter to them.
- No professional storytelling experience required!
- And you definitely don’t need to consider yourself to be a “good storyteller” –whatever that means! The important thing is that you enjoy listening to others.
- Fill out a volunteer application.
- Instructions for next steps will be emailed to qualified applicants as applications are reviewed.
- Note: As a largely volunteer organization, we are occasionally overwhelmed by applications and unable to review them all. If you are particularly interested in helping manage volunteers and applications, please let us know in your application.
Outreach / Organizing
Volunteers are needed to help with website, social media, and/or volunteer recruitment. If you are interested in helping Story Works Alaska grow its programming and improve opportunities for students, please be in touch. You can even start now by liking us on Facebook or following us on Instagram (@storyworksak).
Become a supporter
Interested in donating to support our work? Thank you, we’d love that!
Since Story Works launched in February 2014, we’ve worked with over 2,000 students in the communities of Anchorage and Unalakleet, Alaska. Your support will allow us to work with more students as they share stories, build resilience, and access opportunity.
Work With Us
We are not currently hiring for paid positions. But we will update this site when positions become available.
Additionally, we are often able to welcome new volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering, please fill out a volunteer application and we’ll be in touch if your interest, experience, and skills match current needs.