826 Valencia


Founded by Dave Eggers (McSweeney's editor), 826 Valencia is a nonprofit tutoring center with a twist. Eggers & team found the perfect location for their tutoring center, but were told that due to zoning, they were required to also have a storefront. In true fashion, the team involved decided that a Pirate Supply Store would be best. Let me clarify, this is not a store that sells pirate toys. This is a store that sells supplies to pirates. We're talking glass eyes, peg legs, hooks, and parrot food.

Recently, 826 Valencia enlisted the help of San Fransisco design firm, office, to develop the store's new identity along with about 50 new products. The results are fabulously fun and creative. All proceeds go directly to benefit 826 Valencia's writing programs, which have now extended to New York (Superhero supply store), Boston, Michigan, Seattle (Space Travel supply store), LA (Time Travel mart), and Chicago (Spy store).

This is the culmination of creativity, design and community service at its best.

(As a side note, you can watch Dave Eggars' Ted talk about this initiative here. It's well worth the 24 minutes.)