Special to the Times by Shadrach Michaels

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is an internationally renowned book gifting program that directly mails age appropriate literature every month to children from birth to age 5, in participating communities, within the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Republic of Ireland.  After twenty-five years of operating, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library has delivered an estimated 145,470, 253 books to almost 2 million children, currently mailing over one million books every month. 

Now, this literacy program has the potential to reach over 500 children right here in White Pine County, because of financial support of generous contributions and donations raised through The White Pine County Library and a local championing non-profit, TheNevada Northern Railway Foundation. The NNRY’s joint-partnership with the White Pine County Library secures the needed commitment of funds to cover the mailing costs to our community’s youngest and newest readers.

“When I was growing up in the hills of East Tennessee, I knew my dreams would come true. I know there are children in your community with their own dreams. They dream of becoming a doctor or an inventor or a minister. Who knows, maybe there is a little girl whose dream is to be a writer and singer,” Dolly Parton stated, via her Imagination Library Website. Parton says,  “The seeds of these dreams are often found in books and the seeds you help plant in your community can grow across the world.” 

The White Pine County Library is proud to join the Dolly Parton Imagination Library, as an affiliate, and has begun accepting book mailing sign up registrations at the White Pine County Library, located at 950 Campton St. in Ely, NV.

 Shadrach Michaels, a WPC Library Board Member and local middle school English teacher, coordinated the joint venture between the agencies and said, “The Dolly Parton Imagination Library has done wonderful things to help children learn a love of books early on in their lives. I see in the classroom everyday how learning to read early on really is proven to help children throughout their education.”  

Speaking on behalf of the White Pine County Library, Michaels emphasized that this undertaking is a community effort for a long-term community benefit, and said, “Our own local post office as well as Mark Bassett at the Nevada Northern Railway Foundation deserve the lion’s share of the thanks and gratitude; they are helping by taking the bulk of the work to get these books into the hands of White Pine County’s littlest readers.”

 Signing up your child is free and easy: simply fill out and return a registration form for the 0-5 year old child. Registration forms are available at the White Pine County Library. Within a month, a book will be mailed to your child with their name on the postage stamp and is theirs to keep. “The Railroad is absolutely thrilled to be a part of this wonderful opportunity to help our community,” Bassett said.

You too can contribute to the cause, through donations, which will help enable White Pine County Library to perpetually coordinate postal deliveries of free books from Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to more of White Pine’s early readers.  Every dollar raised provides books and covers their postal delivery, maintaining this as a zero cost service to this specific population of our county.  Contact White Pine County Library at 775-293-6900 to find out more information on how to sign up your 0-5 year old child. To donate, contact Mark Bassett, president@NNRY.com. 

The impact of the program has been widely researched and results suggest positive increases in key early childhood literac