Did you know?
In some U.S. communities, there is only one book for every 300 children under the age of five. In Calhoun County, our story is different. Thanks to United Way of East Central Alabama and Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, every child below the age of 5 is elegible to receive a free age-appropriate book each month delivered to their doorstep! In fact, if they are enrolled in the program at birth, they'll have 60 books to call their own by the time they enter kindergarten.
Imagination Library currently has over 3,000 children enrolled in the program. This means that last year alone, United Way of East Central Alabama delivered more than 30,000 free books to kids throughout Calhoun County. The organization has been fortunate enough to never have a waiting list for this program. However, the cost to United Way for each child enrolled is $30 annually. It's easy to see that the program can be costly, but United Way feels that there is no wiser investment than in that of our youngest citizens.
During March of 2016, United Way decided to host an online and social media campaign to coincide with Read Across America week. The Give 30 Campaign was introduced asking residents to sponsor a child for Imagination Library at just $30 for a year. The organization set a goal of sponsoring 150 children for the program in hopes to avoid creating a waiting list. In a week's time, the Give 30 Campaign had exceeded its goal, with at least 157 children sponsored for the program. $30 is such a simple gift to give for something that can last a lifetime - LITERACY!
We invite you to join us in our work to deliver books to Calhoun County's children. Give 30 and sponsor a child today. Or, if you know someone with a child under the age of 5, make sure they know about this wonderful program and the benefits of reading to young children.