Imagination Library "Opens" in Sullivan County05.28.2005
Every child from birth to age five now has the chance to own free age-appropriate books selected for distribution through the Sullivan County Imagination Library. Once children are registered, they receive a hardcover book by mail each month — at no cost to their parents. While the book selection varies for each child, one of the first books received after registering is The Little Engine That Could and the final book is Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come.
Registration is available at all of the public libraries in Sullivan County, TN including Bristol, Avoca, Blountville, Bluff City, Kingsport, Carver, Bloomingdale, Colonial Heights and Sullivan Gardens. To date, 2,500 of the 8,000 children who are eligible for this program have been registered.
The Imagination Library is a cooperative effort between Governor Bredeson, the State of Tennessee, the Dolly Parton Foundation, the Bristol Chamber of Commerce, the Kingsport Chamber Foundation, and Sullivan County Imagination Library Foundation.
It is a model of the program that Dolly Parton started in Sevier County in 1996 to spark a lifelong love of reading in children.
Bredesen and the Tennessee General Assembly included $2 million in "challenge grants" in the budget to stoke the effort to expand Parton's Imagination Library into a statewide reading initiative. A local match is required, and raising the funds to sustain the Sullivan County Imagination Library will be an ongoing effort.
The cost of sponsoring one child is $27 per year. A wide range of sponsorship opportunities is available to businesses and individuals. To sponsor a child or make a financial contribution to the Sullivan County Imagination Library project, send your tax-deductible donation to: Sullivan County Imagination Library, P.O. Box 1403, Kingsport, TN 37662.