This past Monday was my first day back from being on maternity leave for most of the summer. Hannah did a fabulous job with “Glad You Asked” while I was out, and I’m thankful for her help.
Just before I returned, our library and youth services staff received an award from the United Way of Delaware County during their 2018 Changing the Odds Recognition Luncheon. Youth Services Manager Kelly Cochran and Delaware County District Library Director George Needham attended the luncheon to accept the Imagination Library Recognition Award on the library’s behalf. This award goes to a person or organization who helps promote the mission of the Imagination Library program in the community.
If you aren’t familiar with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, it was founded in 1955 to ensure every preschool child could have their own library of books. Each month, from the day the child is born until their fifth birthday, a book is mailed to the child’s home. Thanks to sponsorship from the United Way of Delaware County, all children living in the county are eligible for the program regardless of their ability to pay. The program is open to all children five years old and younger who live in the county and costs $25 per year, but scholarships are available.
The Library assists individuals who want to sign up for the program. We have plenty of information on hand regarding the program and how to get your child or a child you know started. Additionally, once a child turns five and is no longer eligible to receive books, the Library hosts an Imagination Library Graduation Party! The party typically has games and activities, snacks, and the occasional visit from a beloved character.
My oldest daughter has been enrolled in the program since her birth, and my daughter born this summer will soon receive her first book. The first book mailed, regardless of the number of children in the program in a household, is “The Little Engine That Could.” This book was especially precious to Dolly because it was the one book her daddy read her every day, even though he never learned how to read.
Here are a few books that my oldest daughter has found particularly precious in her Imagination Library collection:
• “Pup and Bear” by Kate Banks. A stranded wolf cub is rescued and raised by a loving polar bear, and years later when he is grown into a wolf and on his own, he comes upon a lost polar bear cub, and the cycle begins again.
• “Bunny’s Book Club” by Annie Silvestro. Bunny loves reading so much that he begins sneaking into the library at night to borrow books, and soon his friends want to join him.
• “The Gingerbread Man Loose on the Fire Truck” by Laura Murray. When the Gingerbread Man joins the children who made him on a school field trip to a fire station, he escapes being eaten by Spot the Dalmatian and rides along to a fire.
• “Truck Stop” by Anne Rockwell. A boy and his parents prepare breakfast at their truck stop for drivers of eighteen-wheelers, tankers, moving vans, and other vehicles, while Uncle Marty checks tires and makes repairs.
• “Maple” by Lori Nichols. A nature-loving little girl’s favorite playmate is her maple tree, until the day she’s surprised with a baby sister.
• “Little Owl’s Night” by Divya Srinivasan. Little Owl enjoys a lovely night in the forest visiting his friend the raccoon, listening to the frogs croak and the crickets chirp, and watching the fog that hovers overhead.
If you have a question that you would like to see answered in this column, mail it to Nicole Fowles, Delaware County District Library, 84 E. Winter St., Delaware, OH 43015, or call us at 740-362-3861. You can also email your questions by visiting the library’s web site at www.delawarelibrary.org or directly to Nicole at email@example.com. No matter how you contact us, we’re always glad you asked!