75% of Children in Dublin 24 signed up to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

February 14, 2020:

More than 5,000 children – 75% of all 0-5 year olds in Dublin 24 – have signed up to a local free book scheme being supported by Dolly Parton, since it was launched one year ago today.

The Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL) project is being coordinated by the Tallaght based Childhood Development Initiative (CDI) to encourage local children’s reading.

Childhood Development Initiative (CDI) Programme Coordinator Emma Reilly said the book gifting scheme celebrates its first birthday in Ireland today (Friday, February 14) and gave details of the programme’s success.

“An estimated 75% (5,331) of children aged 0-5 years in Dublin 24 have received, or are currently receiving books. Together with the support of An Post and Tusla, 33,108 books have been delivered during the past year. We are so grateful to the local Postmen and Postwomen who have helped to get all of these books into the hands of more children.”

Parents living in Dublin 24 can sign their children up at www.cdi.ie/imaginationlibrary and they receive a free high-quality book to keep every month until they are five. The books are addressed to the child and posted directly to their home.

Ms Reilly also highlighted the need for corporate and public support to sustain the programme into the future.

“CDI is the affiliate for the Imagination Library here in Ireland. DPIL provides the book ordering system, the branding and the ability to buy books at cost price. CDI, supported by Tusla, buys the books at cost and coordinates programme delivery.

“We will be commencing a major fundraising campaign in the coming weeks and months, looking for corporate and individual sponsorship. €5 is the cost of two books per month. CDI is grateful to Shamrock Rovers Football Club which is actively promoting it in the Tallaght and surrounding community and also to The Rotary Club.

“Given this success we are also supporting the expansion of the programme to other parts of the country and exciting announcements are expected soon,” she said.

CDI is a non-profit organisation working to improve outcomes for children in disadvantaged communities in Ireland. Established in 2004 in Tallaght, Dublin 24, CDI designs, delivers and evaluates prevention and early intervention programmes for children in literacy, health, speech and language, parenting, and conflict prevention. 

More information is at www.cdi.ie 

Benefits of reading

  • The more words a child hears in their early childhood, the more words they will have later in childhood.
  • Sending books into homes creates more opportunities for having conversations about stories and learning more new words
  • Having books in the home, is a strong predicator of better outcomes, regardless of whether children have been read to or not
  • Spending time reading to your child helps create positive attachment between caregivers and the child.
  • The human voice reading / speaking with the child has been found to be critical in children’s language development, and technology does not have the same impact. 

Further Information

Ronan Cavanagh, Cavanagh Communications: Tel (086) 317 9731