SJ-R: Literacy program seeks donations

dpil_childThe United Way of Central Illinois is hoping a national campaign can keep a local early childhood literacy program from shutting down.

“Giving Tuesday,” which will be held tomorrow, is a daylong national event designed to help charities raise money online.

United Way of Central Illinois, community partners and Springfield Mayor Mike Houston joined together Monday at the Early Learning Center, 2501 S. First St., to encourage residents and businesses to get involved.

The event coincided with a kickoff of a monthlong campaign called “Gift of Reading,” to support Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. The program, run locally by the Community Child Care Connection, provides one free, age-appropriate book each month to children under the age of 5.

In 2013, Imagination Library provided more than 31,000 books to more than 3,800 children enrolled in the program.

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