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Dolly Parton's Imagination Library program hits milestone in Northeast Ohio with 1 million books mailed

The Imagination Library program sends children ages 5 and younger one free book each month.
Credit: Rawpixel.com - stock.adobe.com

AKRON, Ohio — The United Way of Summit and Medina has reached a milestone with their participation in Dolly Parton's Imagination Library. The organization announced Tuesday that it has now mailed out more than one million books to local children.

Here's how it works: Each child 5 years of age and younger who resides in Summit or Medina counties is eligible for the free program, which sends a brand new book monthly to every youngster who is enrolled. The first book every child receives as part of the program is The Little Engine That Could. As the child then approaches the end of their membership, the book Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come is sent their way in their final month of eligibility.

You can sign your child up for the Imagination Library program for free HERE.

The program receives funding from the United Way of Summit and Medina, the Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library and local donors. A one-time gift of $30 allows children to receive one book per month for a year.

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The Imagination Library was launched back in 1995 by Dolly Parton with the goal of benefiting children in her home county of East Tennessee. Parton wanted to help create a love of reading amongst the young children in her county.

“United Way of Summit & Medina hosts one of the largest Imagination Library programs in Ohio,” said Jim Mullen, president and CEO at United Way of Summit & Medina. “All three of my children participated in this program, and it’s incredible to see firsthand how the gift of thoughtful literature enriched their lives and is improving the lives of children and families in our community.”

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Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published in an unrelated story on Feb. 23, 2022.

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