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In 1995 Dolly Parton established the Dolly Parton Imagination Library in Sevier County, Tennessee. She wanted every preschool child to have his/her own collection of books because she knew that reading with the preschool child is the single most important activity to prepare a child for school success. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library has since that time expanded across the US and to other countries. Did you know that Polk County is the first county in southwestern Arkansas to get onboard with this truly effective program? Currently one hundred thirty-eight children are enrolled here in Polk County!

Polk County Library has partnered with Quality of Life Outreach to bring the gift of books into the homes of preschoolers in our county at no cost to the parents. How does this work? Local businesses, local groups, churches, and good-hearted folks invest at the rate of only $25 per year per child. This pays for twelve books per year for a preschooler right here in Polk County. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library pays all the administrative costs. The preschool child whose parents/guardians have signed him/her up will start receiving books in the mail addressed to him/her in about six weeks. The child keeps receiving a quality, age-appropriate book at this rate until his/her fifth birthday.

Having books in the home and being read to increases the potential for a child’s success in school tremendously. Success in school in turn increases the likelihood of staying in school until graduation, and that in turn increases the potential for the child to become a successful, happy, and productive adult in our community.

Are you a local business, group, church, or good-hearted person who would like to invest in our community in this manner? It’s easy. Contact Mary Ditzel (479) 216-9329, marybethditzel@gmail.com  at Quality of Life Outreach for more details. Or mail a donation to Quality of Life Outreach, PO Box 1135, Mena, AR 71953 to start supporting one or more children here in Polk County today.

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