Imagination Library of Ohio Reaches Several Milestones

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The joy of reading is continuing to spread among Ohio’s youngest children.

Gov. Mike DeWine and first lady Fran DeWine announced Thursday that more than 50% of Ohio children up to age 5 are now enrolled in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library of Ohio free book program, and more than 10 million books have been mailed since 2019.

In Mahoning County, 54% of eligible children are enrolled in the program. Enrollment is at 44% in Trumbull County and 49% in Columbiana County.

When the program was established in 2019, it was available in only parts of the state. In late 2020, it became available to all families in each of the state’s 88 counties.

“It’s wonderful to travel Ohio’s 88 counties, read an Imagination Library book to children and hear about the impact these books are having on Ohio’s families,” Fran DeWine said in a news release. “And research shows these books spark interest in reading and improve kindergarten readiness. Now that we’ve hit more than 50 percent enrollment, I will continue working to enroll even more families.”

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library of Ohio has 71 affiliates that administer the program on a county level and cover 50% of the cost of books. The remaining cost is covered by the Imagination Library of Ohio.

A child enrolled at birth will receive all 60 books in the program until his or her fifth birthday. Books are age-appropriate and mailed to a child’s home every month. Children can be enrolled here.

Pictured at top: Gov. Mike DeWine and first lady Fran DeWine attend a Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library of Ohio book reading event.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.