Press release submitted to Upper Sandusky Community Library
A free book gifting program open to any child 5 years old and under is available to all Wyandot County children beginning May 1st. With generous funding support from the Ohio Legislature and local giving, the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Program will mail a new book to each enrolled child every month at no cost to his or her family. The state provides a dollar-for-dollar match with local funds.
Parents can now register their eligible child at ohioimaginationlibrary.org.
Many local organizations have banned together to organize and facilitate the program with the Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library. Those involved include the Wyandot County Community Foundation, Wyandot County Chamber of Commerce, Wyandot County Office of Economic Development, Wyandot Family and Children First Council, Carey and Upper Sandusky Schools, and the Wyandot area libraries.
Local program funds will be processed through the Wyandot County Community Foundation. Those area organizations already contributing startup funds to the program include First National Bank of Sycamore, Vaughn Industries, United Way of Wyandot County, Upper Sandusky Kiwanis Club, Upper Sandusky Rotary Club, and Wyandot County Young Professionals.
Even with these contributions, additional funding is still needed for the Wyandot County Imagination Library’s initial year of operation based on projections. It is also anticipated that annual program funding needs will increase as the program expands with more local children registering.
Program History: In 1995, Dolly Parton launched an exciting new effort, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, to benefit the children of her home county in East Tennessee, USA. Dolly’s vision was to foster a love of reading among her county’s preschool children and their families. The new program gave each child a specially selected book each month. By mailing high quality, age appropriate books directly to their homes, Dolly wanted children to be excited about books and to feel the magic that books can create. Moreover, she could ensure that every child would have books, regardless of their family’s income.
Since its launch, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library has set and surpassed many goals and milestones. National replication, which started in 2000, allowed more and more communities to adopt the program. State-wide coverage was established in Tennessee in 2004. Furthermore, international growth provided expansion in Canada, United Kingdom and Australia.
How It Works: Each month, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library mails a high quality, age appropriate book to all registered children, addressed to them, at no cost to the child’s family. Countless parents have shared how excited their child is when their new book arrives each month. Many groups and individuals work hard behind the scenes to make that special moment possible for each child.
The Imagination Library provides the infrastructure of the core program including managing the secure central database for the Book Order System and coordinating book selections and wholesale purchasing. It also incurs the cost of the program’s administrative expenses and coordinates the monthly mailings.