To improve educational opportunities for young children, a program is being initiated in Montcalm County to provide books.
The Dolly Parton Imagination Library is being brought to the area through the Montcalm County Great Start Collaborative.
Mindy Train, parent liaison for Montcalm County Great Start Collaborative, said the program will supply a book to every child in the county each month from the day the child is born until his or her third birthday.
“With doing some research, I have found out that we have 2,500 kids under the age of 3 in Montcalm County,” Train said. “Our goal is to reach out to all the kids under age of 3.”
According to the Dolly Parton Imagination Library website, the program gives something simple and powerful to children and parents.
“By reading regularly with our children, we can give them the biggest boost toward a successful education they will ever get, making a huge difference in their future and the future of our communities,” the website says.
The program was founded by legendary country singer Dolly Parton with a dream of supplying children with their own personal library.
Train said in order to launch the program in March 2013, she has to have the first year’s cost ready to go, which is $6,000. It costs about $27 per child per year.
“More then any other skill, the ability to read helps a child succeed in schools, function in society and have more employment options in the future,” Train said. “Parents are a child’s first and best teacher, therefore providing tools to parents to encourage literacy is critical.”
To learn more about the Dolly Parton Imagination Library or how to donate to the Montcalm County program, contact Train at (616) 225-6146 or firstname.lastname@example.org.