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First Book Brings 50,000 New Books to Detroit Kids

DETROIT, March 24, 2011 -- First Book distributed 50,000 brand-new books to schools and programs serving children in Detroit's lowest-income neighborhoods this week.

"Detroit has been hit hard by the economic downturn, and we here at First Book are doing our part by providing the books that children need to become successful students, and heroic teachers need to elevate the content of their programs," said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book.

"We're grateful to Target for their support of this program, and their commitment to ensuring that all children become proficient readers," she said.

The books were distributed to 50 schools in the Detroit metropolitan region, including Communities In Schools of Detroit, Carleton Elementary School, Teach For America Detroit, Detroit Community Schools, Hope Academy, Cesar Chavez Academy Elementary, Clara Rutherford Academy, Cooke School, Mason Elementary School, Detroit Leadership Academy, and many other elementary schools, literacy groups and private academies.

"Our teachers are absolutely thrilled," said Dan Maier of the YMCA Detroit Leadership Academy. "As a brand new school, we only have the required number of text books and these books are a godsend.  It's like Christmas in February."

The book donation was made possible thanks to support by Target. This support is part of Target's reading initiative, Target Read With Me(SM), which aims to help more U.S. children read proficiently by the end of third grade. Through this initiative, Target aims to bring greater awareness to the education crisis in America, reinforce the important role reading plays in shaping a child's future, and provide access to the tools and resources needed to help kids stay on the path to graduation.

About First Book

First Book provides new books to children in need, addressing one of the most important factors affecting literacy – access to books. An innovative leader in social enterprise, First Book has distributed more than 80 million free and low-cost books in thousands of communities. First Book has offices in the U.S. and Canada. For more information, please visit us online or follow our latest news on Facebook and Twitter.