26 children from the H.A.L.O. Child Enrichment Center joined United Way of Central Florida Staff for our annual Dog Days of Summer event and signed up to be apart of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library.

All received the first book from The Dolly Parton Imagination Library, The Little Engine that Could by Walter Piper and The Dog Days of School by Kelly DiPucchio.

The Imagination Library provides children with a free new book every month for their first five years. Dolly Parton started the Imagination Library in 1995, to fight illiteracy in her eastern Tennessee community.

Research shows that disadvantaged children come to school years behind their peers in pre-reading skills, and rarely catch up — and that the children still struggling to read in 3rd grade are the ones who eventually drop out.

If you or your business would like to sponsor a child for The Imagination Library, it costs just $25 a year for five years to give the gift of reading to one child. We would like to thank our latest sponsor, GiveWell Community Foundation, which presented United Way of Central Florida Success By 6 with a check at Dog Days of Summer so many additional children in Central Florida can now be enrolled in the program.