Letter to the Editor Contact: Cynthia Heady, 423-1729
“To learn to read is to light a fire.”
Children in Lenawee County are reading more thanks to a $1,300 grant from Lenawee YOUTH Council. This grant will purchase 520 books for Lenawee’s children through the Imagination Library.
The Imagination Library delivers a new, age-appropriate book each month to registered children between the ages of birth and 5 years, who live in Lenawee County. The books are mailed directly to each child at his/her home from Dolly Parton’s Dollywood Foundation, where childhood literacy experts select the books, and a partnership with their printer greatly reduces the cost to the Lenawee Community Foundation.
The children get to keep the books, so a child registered at birth can accumulate a collection up to 60 books of their very own. Currently around 1,500 children in Lenawee County receive books each month. Titles include The Little Engine that Could, Llama Llama Red Pajama, Violet the Pilot, All of Baby Nose to Toes, and more.
There is no cost to the families to receive books for their children. Individuals, foundations, and service clubs have been generous donors sponsoring the cost of $30 per child, per year. The annual program cost totals approximately $50,000 per year.
Because 90% of a child’s brain development occurs between birth and age 5, and 15 minutes of reading out loud to children everyday will exposes them to ONE MILLION written words a year, the Imagination Library is an excellent investment in children. This is truly a gift that will keep on giving, as our children are better prepared for kindergarten and beyond!
For information about sponsoring or registering a child contact Lenawee Community Foundation at (517) 423-1729, firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.lenaweecf.com.
Cynthia Heady is the Project & Community Wellness Coordinator, Lenawee Community Foundation.