The Village Initiative’s Learning Support Committee oversees several initiatives, programs, and events that directly engage the educational needs of students in our community.
The Village Initiative builds, installs, and maintains several book boxes across the WJCC community, which provide children with free books.
The Village believes that every child deserves free and open access to the tools they need to learn and succeed. We also know that many families in WJCC do not have the financial means to buy books. Since 2021, the Village has collected hundreds of donated books from community members and placed them in our book boxes, which can be found in many public spaces across Williamsburg and James City County.
There's no need to leave a book or return them — our books are completely free for anyone to take home and keep!
Book donations can be arranged on a case-by-case basis or dropped off during normal operating hours at:
Colonial CASA (3917 Midlands Suite 2A)
Williamsburg Christian Church
(in the drop box at the church entryway)
Since 2017, The Village Initiative has recruited, supervised, and supported up to 40 volunteer tutors in the WJCC Schools each year.
The Village Tutoring Program 2019-2020
50% from the Community
50% William & Mary Students
James River Elementary
James Blair Middle School
An estimated 350 hours of volunteer tutoring per year across the three schools.
Community member Dr. Satoshi Ito tutors young learners with The Village at James River
English Language Learners
The Village is dedicated to supporting WJCC's English Language Learners and their families.
W&M Student Mentors
Through a partnership with The Village Initiative and the WJCC Schools, W&M professors, Jennifer Bickham-Mendez and John "Rio" Riofrio, developed and offered a course entitled, “Educational Justice and Marginalized Communities” in the Spring 2019 and Spring 2020 semesters.
Village member Jennifer Bickham Mendez named "Volunteer of the Year" at James Blair Middle School for her work with ELL students and their families
Through coursework, academic and policy-oriented readings, and discussion, W&M students in the course explored issues related to educational disparities and structural barriers to education in US public schools.
W&M tutor/mentors visited James Blair Middle School for an hour every week to work and build mentoring relationships with students, including groups of newcomer English-language learners.
288 hours of tutoring
24 W&M students
126 hours of tutoring
21 W&M students
(cut short due to COVID-19)