More than 3,000 children a month now get free books through their door in Nottingham thanks to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.
Nottingham City Council has been working alongside the Rotary Club of Nottingham to co-ordinate fundraising since it chose to back the Imagination Library in the city in 2012. Since then, donations have increased to see more and more children benefiting.
Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library delivers children a free book for them to keep and read with their family every month; they receive these from birth until their fifth birthday.
The milestone is being announced as part of the Looking After Each Other campaign, run by the council with the Nottingham City CCG and the Nottingham Community and Voluntary Service, which is encouraging people to do more to help others. Donating to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is one of the ways people can do this.
Cllr David Mellen, Portfolio Holder for Early Intervention and Early Years, said: “Reaching this milestone is amazing – it means 3,000 children are now benefiting from getting a free book through their door every month. This is all thanks to the fantastic efforts of our fundraisers and partners.
“It’s so important: the free book is about more than just reading; it’s dedicated time that parents are spending with their children, developing a love of books at an early age. As well as the close bond this fosters in families, it can also help with language development.
“However, we need to ensure that people continue to support this charity. I would like to see these free books go to every home in the city.”
Local data shows that Nottingham children are likely to start school with reading skills up to 14% behind the national average, while recent research in the US shows that children who have been on the scheme for three years or more are 28% more ‘school ready’ than those who have not received the books.
Since 2012 over £200,000 has been raised across the city; enough to give out more than 100,000 books. The charity has now delivered over 55,000 books to children registered on the scheme. The money raised will ensure that these children will continue to get the books until their 5th birthday.
Donations are always welcome. Just £2 a month is enough to ensure a child gets their free book. Or for a one off donation of just £25 you will be paying for one child to receive these wonderful books delivered to their home each month for an entire year. You can find out how to donate here.
To find out more about Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library go to www.dollybooksnottingham.org