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Literacy Coalition
October 22, 2015

Imagination Library expands
throughout Onondaga County!

A huge thanks to the Onondaga County Legislature and, especially, County Executive Joanie Mahoney, for supporting our county-wide expansion of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, one of the first steps on the path for children to become lifelong readers and learners!

In particular, County Executive Mahoney was with us when we launched Imagination Library in May of 2010 on the front lawn of White Branch Library and, as seen in the above photo, she was one of our celebrity readers. Since that time, we have worked closely with Onondaga County and our 80+ referral partners that have helped us enroll children into the program. Now all children from birth to age 5 throughout Onondaga County will now be eligible to receive an age-appropriate book monthly starting in 2016. To date, almost 100,000+ books have been distributed to over 7,000 children.

These efforts would not be possible without the continued support of Mayor Stephanie Miner, who still helps us with the city-wide expansion, along with on-going commitment of the Central New York Community Foundation, iHeartMedia, the Reisman Foundation and a growing list of community partners. An essential component of our work has also been the rigorous evaluation of the impact of Imagination Library by a team of researchers at Le Moyne College.

If you’d like to learn more about our work, go to www.onliteracy.org or read some of the following recent editorials and newspaper articles from www.syracuse.com:

“Onondaga County’s promise of books
to children expands minds”

By the Editorial Board on October 15, 2015 - The Onondaga County legislature turned a page Tuesday by allocating $300,000 out of next year's budget to provide a book each month to every county child under the age of five. Read more »

“Onondaga County Legislature adopts 2016 budget
with lower property taxes, more amphitheater oversight”
(and Imagination Library)

By Michelle Breidenbach on October 13, 2015 - The Onondaga County Legislature on Tuesday unanimously approved a $1.263 billion spending plan for 2016 that includes a decrease in the property tax rate and more oversight of the new Onondaga Lake amphitheater. Read more »

“Open Imagination Library to all Onondaga County children”

By the Editorial Board on August 19, 2015 - "Reading regularly with young children stimulates optimal patterns of brain development and strengthens parent-child relationships at a critical time in child development, which, in turn, builds language, literacy, and social-emotional skills that last a lifetime.'' Read more »

“Free books for every child: Onondaga County
wants to grow its Imagination Library”

By Marnie Eisenstadt on August 12, 2015 - A program that gave 6,000 children in Syracuse free books every month for the past five years should be expanded to serve pre-school children throughout Onondaga County, county officials said. Read more »