It’s an exciting time for families with young children across Washington, as Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is growing in every corner of our state. Today, ALL children between birth and age five living in Snohomish County are now eligible to get free books in the mail each month, thanks to new program affiliate United Way of Snohomish County.
“We are so excited to extend this amazing resource to all of Snohomish County. Our goal has always been to serve the most vulnerable within our community, specifically children birth to 8 and their families, so the Imagination Library is the perfect addition to the work we and our partners are already doing. Literacy is crucial for success, but access to those resources is not always available for the families that need it the most. Delivering books straight into hands of children, while also giving families the opportunity to read together is an important first step into helping young children enter school with a readiness to learn. We cannot wait to watch this grow and are proud to be partners with this exciting movement,” stated Brittany Williams, Director of Communications & Marketing for United Way of Snohomish County.
United Way of Snohomish County joins four additional affiliates serving Snohomish County kids; Arlington Education Foundation, Lake Stevens Education Foundation, Monroe Public Schools Foundation, and Stanwood-Camano Rotary Club. Currently, over 3,300 children are registered for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in Snohomish County, with nearly 51,000 children under five eligible for the program. Snohomish County boasts the third largest early learner population, behind King and Pierce counties.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library sends a free, age-appropriate book monthly to every child enrolled in the program from birth to age 5. This early literacy program provides equitable access to books, increases Kindergarten readiness, and fosters a love of reading and books amongst our youngest learners. Dolly created the Imagination Library in 1995 as a tribute to her father, whose inability to read and write inspired her to get more books into the hands of young children, igniting their love of reading and learning. To-date, more than 2.4 million children are enrolled in the Imagination Library in five countries: U.S., Canada, Australia, UK, and the Republic of Ireland.
Families can register their children online by visiting www.imaginationlibrarywashington.org/check_availability.
“United Way of Snohomish County is helping us reach the finish line of statewide program completion! Only four counties are left until we reach full access for all Washington early learners. Our affiliates are the heart and soul of this program! They take a chance, they step up, and they do the fundraising, the advocating, and the outreach to provide this incredibly valuable early literacy opportunity to our youngest residents. They are heroes, and today, we are so proud to celebrate United Way of Snohomish County, and the children that will now be able to participate because of their support,” stated Executive Director of Imagination Library of Washington, Brooke Fisher-Clark.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is currently reaching more than 56,000 Washington children through 44 local affiliate programs, with 72% of all children between birth and age five now having program access to register for a free book each month. For information on the Imagination Library of Washington and how to support getting more books into the hands of young children, visit www.imaginationlibrarywashington.org.
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