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The Desert Island Supply Co. gives students in the Birmingham area more opportunities to write.
The Desert Island Supply Co. gives students in the Birmingham area more opportunities to write.
244 backers pledged $21,460 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$21,460

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What is the Desert Island Supply Co.?

Inspired by programs such as 826 Valencia and the Austin Bat Cave, the Desert Island Supply Co. is a nonprofit creative writing program in Birmingham, Ala.

Based in Birmingham's Woodlawn neighborhood, DISCO is dedicated to giving area students more opportunities to write.

We think that writing is a good end in itself, but we also believe that by strengthening their writing skills, students learn to explore their minds, intensify their intellectual habits and shape their own futures.



What does the Desert Island Supply Co. do?

DISCO offers free writing workshops for students, ages 6-18. We do our workshops at libraries, museums, community centers, community gardens, and wherever else we're needed. We also work with local schools and teachers on individual projects and needs -- everything from preparing 10th graders for a state writing test to running slam workshops for the poetry club to talking odes with 4th graders.

This summer, we have exciting things happening.

From mid-May till the end of the August, we're partnering with Jones Valley Urban Farm to offer a drop-in writing workshop at the Pepper Place Saturday Market, Birmingham's largest farmers market. Each week, JVUF chooses an in-season fruit or vegetable, and we use that fruit or vegetable as the inspiration for that week's batch of writing prompts.

We've started doing a similar writing booth at the Saturday East Lake Farmer's Market.

We're also partnering with the McWane Science Center to take the writing booth to their special events and exhibits. Throughout the summer, we're also working with the city's Community Education Department to offer creative writing workshops at Birmingham City Camp.



How would the Desert Island Supply Co. spend the money raised through Kickstarter?

Every penny you contribute through Kickstarter will go toward helping DISCO offer more and better programs. We can accomplish this best by building out our own space. We've found space (and a very supportive landlord) at Woodrow Hall, a renovated Masonic hall on 1st Avenue North in Woodlawn. The space is sandwiched between two schools, both of which we've been working in since January, so we know we'll be able to reach a lot of students by offering after-school writing workshops and tutoring.

Please help us make this happen! Pledge as little as $5 and help us give students in the Birmingham area more opportunities to write.

Thank you for your support!

(Note: Your contribution to DISCO is tax deductible. DISCO is in the process of applying for 501(c)(3) status. In the meantime, Main Street Birmingham acts as DISCO's fiscal agent. MSB will send a contribution letter to every project supporter. If you have any questions about your support or would rather contribute to DISCO outside of Kickstarter, please contact Chip Brantley at chip@desertislandsupplyco.com.)

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    You get access to all of DISCO's project updates, plus your name will be handwritten into DISCO's Book of Names.

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    23 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    The above, plus a beautifully designed digital copy of the The Pen the Dreams, a collection of poems by 7- to 11-year olds from DISCO's first workshop.

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    26 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    All of the above, plus a beautifully designed digital copy of How Writing Can Keep You Sane When You're Stranded on a Desert Island, a book of writing exercises (and survival tips) by DISCO writers.

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    60 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    All of the above, plus numbered and signed print copies of The Pen that Dreams and How Writing Can Keep You Sane When You're Stranded on a Desert Island.

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    37 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    All of the above, plus the DISCO Survival Kit, which includes DISCO-created mixes of desert island music; one desert island book chosen by a DISCO writer with a handwritten note about why she chose that book; and some handmade DISCO tools that will serve you well while you're stranded.

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    16 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    All of the above, plus a one-year subscription to everything DISCO produces, including but not limited to books, cookbooks (charred conch!), letterpress posters, waterproof pamphlets, art, tools, clothing and tacky coconut jewelry. All yours sent in four quarterly installments.

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    Limited 7 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    All of the above, plus a one-of-a-kind history in book form of a fictional desert island, made just for you (or someone you love) by a DISCO writer and an Alabama book artist.

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    Limited 3 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    All of the above, plus a small history in book form about you (or your friend or family or business or organization) to be researched, written, designed and made by DISCO writers and artists.

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    Limited 0 backers
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Funding period

- (86 days)