Letter – Proud partner in Dolly’s library

Published 7:41 pm Monday, February 20, 2023

Editor, The Smithfield Times:

We sincerely appreciate Smithfield Foods (Jonathan Toms and Brandy Childs) and the DeGood Foundation (Kyle DeGood) for their commitment to early-childhood literacy in Isle of Wight County through the establishment and funding of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL) program.

The Food For Thought Literacy Initiative from the Christian Outreach Program was a proud community partner of DPIL’s Launch Party on Feb. 18. At this event over 80 registered children were provided books, reading incentives, food and entertainment. It was a county literacy extravaganza celebrated by over 200 children and adults.

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Other participating community partners were the Blackwater Regional Library, The Children’s Center, Western Tidewater Infant and Toddler Program, Smart Beginnings, the Luter Family YMCA, The Smithfield Kiwanis Club and the Isle of Wight Sheriff’s Department.

All Isle of Wight children up to the age of 5 are eligible for registration in this ongoing program. Each registered child will receive an age-appropriate book each month by mail. To register, visit https://imaginationlibrary.com/, click on CHECK AVAILABILITY, and enter the child’s home zip code.

The single most significant factor influencing a child’s early educational success is an introduction to books and being read to at home prior to beginning school. (National Commission of Reading)

Please join with us in continuing to inform and encourage all parents of children up to the age of 5 to register for this wonderful opportunity for literacy empowerment in Isle of Wight County.


Beth Butner and Kirstin Cook

Food For Thought Literacy Initiative

Christian Outreach Program