Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

Imagine a world where every child develops a love of reading before they even start school. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is doing just that.

Siblings sit in a bean bag and read the books they've received from the Imagination Library program.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

The Imagination Library fosters a love of reading and learning in preschool children by mailing them a free, age-appropriate book each month until they turn 5 years old, regardless of the family’s income. Children who are enrolled at birth will amass their own personal library of 60 books!

Inspired by her father’s inability to read and write, Dolly Parton started her Imagination Library in 1995 for the children within her home county. Today, her program spans four countries and mails over 1 million free books each month to children around the world.

United Way of the Plains launched the national program locally in 2011.

HOW TO REGISTER YOUR CHILD

Sedgwick County

Available in most ZIP codes. 

Sedgwick Registration

Butler County

Available in 67002, 67010, 67041 and 67123.

Butler Registration

Sumner County

Available in all ZIP codes. 

Sumner Registration

A girl flips through a new book she received from the Imagination Library program.

Your child will receive their first book approximately eight weeks after their registration is approved and will continue monthly until they turn five years old, or you move out of the designated ZIP codes. Please notify United Way of the Plains at (316) 267‑1321 if your child’s address changes.

TURNING THE PAGE ON CHILDHOOD LITERACY

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children enrolled in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in 2021.
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books have been mailed to local children since United Way launched the program locally in 2011.

PARENT RESOURCES: LIT KITS

These activity guides are to encourage your child to develop a lifelong love of reading. Resource were compiled by students at Wichita State University.

Find more resources, including tips to build good reading habits at every age, color and activity sheets, and instructional videos for specific books at Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

LOCAL FUNDING

Funding for the program is provided by Kansas Health Foundation, United Way’s Legacy Fund endowment and United Way donations.

We couldn’t be more thankful for our friends at Kansas Health Foundation. Because of their generous grant of $420,000, children in our community will have the gift of free books through Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. A few of these little readers joined us to say thank you!

LOCAL ENROLLMENTS DEPEND ON LOCAL DONATIONS

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is supported locally by community partners, such as United Way of the Plains. Local enrollments depend on local donations. Your gift of $25 sponsors one child for a full year in the program.

DONATE NOW

Gifts by Check
Checks can be sent to United Way of the Plains, 245 N. Water St., Wichita, KS 67202. Please include “Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library” in the memo.

Want to make a corporate donation to underwrite the program or a specific ZIP code?
Contact Anne Chandler, Vice President of Philanthropy, at achandler@unitedwayplains.org or (316) 267‑1321 to discuss further.

OUR FOCUS

Our focus is on healtheducationfinancial stability and basic needs—the building blocks for a good quality of life and a strong community. Click below to learn more about what we’re doing, the programs we invest in and our lasting impact in each area.