SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- As part of Women's History Month and "National March into Literacy" month, we introduce you to a San Francisco woman changing kids' lives one book at a time. Ninive Calegari is cofounder of 826 Valencia, among other things. She is an advocate for child literacy programs and education improvements across the nation. We're proud to honor her as an ABC7 Star.
826 Valencia was co-founded by Ninive Calegari and author Dave Eggers. The pair began the organization in 2002. In the past 16 years, 826 has become a national organization located in six cities in the U.S. They're also about to open in New Orleans.
"There are almost 40 centers around the world that have duplicated part or the whole of our programs," says Ninive, who is proud of their reach. "In Dublin, in Paris, in Mexico City, there are teams. Even as close as Sonoma!"
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Ninive is a fifth generation San Franciscan. She used to be a classroom teacher. She has spent her entire career trying to improve education in local schools and across the nation. "That's always driven me," says Ninive, "working with young people and having them reach their potential".
Next year 826 Valencia will open a third center in San Francisco. It will open in the Mission Bay neighborhood in 2019.
Apart from 826 Valenica, Ninive is also CEO of "Enterprise for Youth," a nonprofit helping young people get jobs.
Ninive is also the CEO and founder of "The Teacher Salary Project," an non-partisan organization trying to increase pay for educators.
Click here to meet more of the ABC7 Stars where you live.