Nonprofit Launches Major Effort to Bring New Books to Latino Kids in Need
Disney Gives First Book Funding to Provide a Wealth of Latino Books and Resources as Part of ‘The Stories for All Project’
WASHINGTON, Feb. 3 –- In a major new effort to reach more Latino children, funded largely by a generous donation from Disney, First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise, has created a groundbreaking collection of books specifically for young Hispanic readers. The books are available exclusively to educators and community leaders serving kids in need.
In addition, First Book is dramatically expanding its outreach to educators and community leaders serving children from Latino families. Educators who serve children in need sign up with First Book to get ongoing access to brand-new-high-quality books – for free and at low cost. Since last year, over 5,000 teachers and program leaders from Hispanic communities have signed up, and First Book has pledged to reach 5,000 more by April.
Thanks to funding from Disney, First Book is also able to offer a complete collection of 50 hand-picked titles for elementary school students, free of charge, to over 2,600 classrooms and programs.
"To become strong readers, kids need to have books in their hands that they’re excited to read," said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book. "We hear from educators in Latino communities across the country who tell us that they need books that resonate with the children they serve, and now – thanks to the generosity of our friends at Disney – First Book is bringing tens of thousands of wonderful, brand-new books to classrooms and community programs everywhere."
As part of the initiative, First Book was able to purchase 60,000 brand-new books, from a range of publishers, to create a Latino Culture collection of over 200 titles. Those books are available now for educators and program leaders who work with kids in need.
"There is such a richness to the storytelling traditions and the legacy of multiple generations of Hispanics in our country," said Roxana Barillas, First Book's director of Hispanic engagement. "We're committed to showcasing not only those traditions and heritage, but also the talents of up and coming Latino authors and illustrators. We want all children, not just Hispanic children, to be able to access these stories."
The collection, as well as the outreach efforts, are part of The Stories for All Project, First Book’s ongoing effort to ensure that children have access to a wide range of books with stories, settings and characters that reflect their own lives. Through The Stories for All Project, First Book is demonstrating to the publishing industry that there is a strong, viable and vibrant market out there for books like these, leading to more diversity in children’s literature and making more stories available to all children.
About First Book
First Book is a nonprofit social enterprise that has distributed more than 100 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. By making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education. For more information, please visit us online or follow our latest news on Facebook and Twitter.