The Lakes Literacy program in September expanded its book mail-out program for children to Granisle.
“The Granisle Public Library has agreed to pay for the children that enroll in the V0J1W0 postal code area. I will enroll them electronically when I receive the registration forms and then I will bill the Granisle Public Library [for the books],” as Jennifer Petersen, Lakes Literacy Outreach Coordinator told Lakes District News.
The program now serves all of the Lakes District, including Burns Lake and the Southside. It also operates the Words on Wheels (W.O.W.) Bus that takes books to remote areas.
Lakes Literacy started last December with 46 books that Peterson mailed out to children in the region. Since then she has sent out 1,104 books and at a total cost of $3,68.62. The scheme is a collaboration with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a program started by the famous country singer which later expanded to Canada, Australia, Ireland and the United Kingdom. It send the books to Petersen each month and then gives her a bill.
“Each child that is registered receives a free, carefully selected, age-appropriate, high quality book each month. These books are personalized with the child’s name and mailed directly to them. He or she can look forward to a new and exciting reading adventure each month until they turn the age of 5,” Petersen said.
There are currently 115 children enrolled and their monthly book mail outs costs about $415.
“The esteemed Blue Ribbon Book Selection Committee, a specially selected panel of early childhood literacy experts, is responsible for reviewing hundreds of potential titles for inclusion in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library,” according to the Imagination Library website.
”Recent studies suggest participation in the Imagination Library is positively and significantly associated with higher measures of early language and math development. The Blue Ribbon Book Selection Committee takes great care in choosing books that meet the different needs of children as they progress from birth to age five. Additionally, the Book Selection Committee will choose titles with content representative of Canadian readers,” the website says.
All of the books in the Imagination Library are published only by Penguin Random House.
The October deliveries for children in the Lakes District are due shortly, Petersen said.
Lakes Literacy received a financial kick start with the help of the Rotary Club of Burns Lake, which pledged $6,000 over three years.
“The Lakes District Early Childhood Development Committee, along with a private donor have also donated to this amazing literacy program” Petersen added. Granisle Public Library is also contributing funds and the Wet’suwet’en First Nation and Burns Lake Band have contributed as well.
To donate to the program call Jennifer Petersen at 250-695-6778 or visit Lakes Literacy’s website at http://www.lakesliteracy.ca/index.html