(Right) Dana Crawford holds newborn Preston for a picture alongside Dana Brazzell, director of perinatal care at Murray-Calloway County Hospital, and Keith Travis, vice president of development, while at the hospital in August. Crawford is the first of 30 babies to be selected to receive a book scholarship as part of the Imagination Library program.
Families of newborn babies not only receive the gift of life at one local hospital, but the gift of written word as a partnership provides 30 newborn babies free books monthly for five years.
The Murray-Calloway Endowment for Healthcare, the United Way of Murray-Calloway County, and the Murray and Calloway Head Starts, teamed for the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library — a program started in 1996 in Tennessee and has since spread to more than 1,600 communities, providing nearly 40 million books — to give 30 randomly selected newborn babies each year a free book monthly until they are 5 years old.
“We’re glad the United Way came to us with this program, and look forward to seeing the happy faces of the parents as they get the good news,” said Keith Travis, vice president of development at MCCH. “This helps make sure there are books in every home and gives them a jump start on their child’s learning and love of reading.”
The program started in August, and newborn Preston Crawford, born Aug. 5, was the first recipient. Parents Dana and Matt Crawford were excited to receive the book scholarship for their son.
“The more you read to children then the more they like to read, which encourages them with school as well,” Dana Crawford said.
For more information on the Imagination Library, visit www.imaginationlibrary.com.