Like many successful musicians before her, Dolly Parton has proved she’s a songstress with a big heart. One example is her Imagination Library initiative, which gives free books to kids from birth to age five.

Through the way it works, this program could inspire a love of reading in all who participate. However, as you can imagine, Imagination Library is not a cheap charitable measure. It is this reality that has made it necessary for the venture to seek fundraising opportunities.

A Program With a Huge Reach

Since it started in 1995, the Imagination Library program has taken off in a major way. There are over 1,600 communities involved, which allows for the distribution of over a million books every month. Books come directly to a child’s home, causing him or her to get excited about expecting them. Also, the program means that low-income families can benefit from increased literacy even when buying books is not otherwise in the budget.

Imagination Library Delivers More than a Million Books to Children Every Month

Perpetually In Need of Funds

Even if you just know the basics about Imagination Library, it’s easy to see the program is worthwhile. However, it’s always in need of funding. Because of that reality, many of the participating communities have stepped up to plan fundraisers. They know that without assistance from people who are ready and willing to help others, the program might not be able to continue in some localities.

Local providers of the Imagination Library program in Lewis County, Kentucky say it costs only $25 per month to sponsor a child and ensure he or she keeps getting age-appropriate books every month. A motorcycle ride recently took place there to raise necessary funds.

The Imagination Library and programs like it are vitally important because the current administration is proposing education budget cuts that are making some people so concerned that they traveled great distances to protest them at the March for Public Education in Washington, D.C.

How You Could Get Involved

If you are also worried about impending education cuts or just want to do your part to support early-childhood literacy, there are almost certainly other events you could attend. Find them through quick internet searches.

Another local Imagination Library-related event in Kentucky involved a dueling pianos event at a sports bar and charged $50 per ticket. At that gathering, it was also possible to book sponsored tables comprised of eight people. Those tickets ranged from $500-$1,000, depending on how close they were to the pianos.

Although it’s great to support the Imagination Library on a personal level, the involvement of organizations that support and fund worthy causes is also crucial. That’s why you could find out if books are being given to kids in your area through the Imagination Library, and if so, approach the appropriate person to indicate your interest in raising funds.

Next, get in touch with businesses in your area and encourage representatives there to sponsor your planned event. If sponsorship is not feasible, you could ask if they might donate a door prize or raffle ticket item that people could win just for showing up. If you’re dreaming up an event that will have printed programs for attendees, discuss how corporate donors could get mentioned in those materials for potentially mutually advantageous promotional impacts.

The fact that so many individuals and businesses are stepping up to support the Imagination Library program when it is so desperately in need of funds shows the power of people who care. You can join them whether by organizing a relevant event or attending one.

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About Author

Kate Harveston covers social justice and human rights issues. She graduated with a Bachelors in English and minored in Criminal Justice, so she enjoys writing about anything related to the intersections of law, politics and culture. For more of her writing, you can visit her blog, Only Slightly Biased.

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