Experience Corps
    Experience Corps is a big idea come to life. In 1988, civic leader John Gardner wrote a concept paper envisioning an "operation give back" to mobilize the time, talent, and experience of older adults to revitalize their communities. Ten years later, he met Civic Ventures founder Marc Freedman, and Experience Corps was born. Now, in 2008, we are an award-winning network of partners, schools and community service organizations in 20 cities across America. Today, 2,000 Experience Corps members work to improve the lives of 20,000 students.

    What does this tell us? That we're tapping into the desire for older adults to be engaged in community, leveraging their capacity to create lasting change, and making sure we conduct the research necessary to deliver the best results.

    These results are essential to Experience Corps. Our members tutor children who need basic literacy skills; they mentor students who count on them for guidance; they partner with classroom teachers to make schools better places to learn; they help create healthier communities. We want their investment to count as much as possible – and we expect them to succeed.


    To create powerful opportunities for older adults to meet society's greatest challenges.


    Older adults in service to children are an integral part of the education strategy across America. Through this generational exchange, children succeed, older adults thrive and communities are made stronger.

    Strategic Focus

    To engage older adults as tutors and mentors to produce outstanding literacy results for children in grades K-3.

    Ahead of the Curve

    The first of 78 million baby boomers turned 60 in 2006. Our work today lays the groundwork for the millions of boomers who will look for purposeful opportunities today and tomorrow. We offer:
    • A new model of community engagement that values and leverages the experience and leadership of people over 55.
    • Measurable results to demonstrate our success.
    • A learning laboratory to study and strengthen our model.
    • A commitment to publish research findings to help expand opportunities for boomers to serve.