Dolly Parton

Imagination Library Program

What is it?
Imagination Library is a partnership between United Way of Eastern LaSalle County and the Dollywood Foundation. In 1995 Dolly Parton developed the program so that every preschool child in her home of Sevier County, Tennessee, would have their own library of books that would encourage in them a love of reading and learning. The program was so successful and generated such interest from across the country that, after much thought, Dolly decided to offer her Imagination Library for replication in any community that will support it. Each month from the day the child is born until his/her 5th birthday, a carefully selected book arrives in the mail. Kids in eastern LaSalle County are sharing the excitement of running to the mailbox to retrieve their book. Visit the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Website.

For Whom?
Imagination Library is for babies born January 1, 2008 and after; and residing in eastern LaSalle County, (Dayton, Grand Ridge, Harding, Leland, Marseilles, Naplate, Norway, Ottawa, Seneca, Serena, Sheridan, and Wedron).

Why begin so early?
Learning to read is a process much like learning to speak or learning to walk. The process begins at birth. Children associate sounds with emotions. They must learn how a book works – you read left to right and you turn pages, They associate pictures with words. These are all steps along the way to learning to read. Perhaps more importantly, they also learn to love to read. Sitting in a loved one’s lap, all warm and cozy, develops a powerful association between reading and love.

What do I as a parent have to do?
Submit a completed enrollment form to United Way of Eastern of Eastern LaSalle County. Notify United Way anytime your address changes in order to continue receiving books. Parents who are able to sponsor their own children are encouraged to do so.

Program Sponsors?
Imagination Library is being funded through local donations from parents and other community members, corporate gifts and special grants. United Way of Eastern LaSalle County is proud to acknowledge and thank our Imagination Library Signature Sponsor, ITW Zip-Pak Foundation.

How Can I Help?
A child can be sponsored for $30 per year or $150 for all five years. To learn more about how the preschool children in our area can sign up for Imagination Library or how you can get involved call United Way of Eastern LaSalle County, 815-434-4003.