Local Coffee County Imagination Library (IL) leaders, representatives from Governor’s Books from Birth Foundation (GBBF), and Tennova Healthcare – Harton CEO Rich Ellis and hospital staff celebrated the 5-year anniversary of the Imagination Library enrollment partnership at the hospital. Since May 2013, Tennova Harton has enrolled newborns into the Imagination Library before discharge from the hospital, giving families a copy of the first IL book, The Little Engine That Could, to take home as a tangible reminder of the monthly gift of books to arrive in their mailbox. With 21 birthing hospitals now enrolling newborns statewide, Tennova Harton was the second hospital to launch enrollment as part of the discharge process.
Since the partnership began, Tennova Harton has provided Coffee County IL with funds to cover 50% of the cost of the first book offered at enrollment, matched by GBBF. To date, the hospital has given over $5,000 to the program, providing a copy of The Little Engine That Could to over 4,000 children. In honor of the hospital’s generosity, GBBF presented a big check to represent the impact of their charitable gift.
To celebrate, nursing staff and hospital CEO Rich Ellis enjoyed refreshments in the hospital conference room. Dean Hoskins, GBBF Vice President, presented the hospital with a letter from First Lady Crissy Haslam, expressing her gratitude for the hospital’s support of the Imagination Library and its early literacy mission.
Frances Samples, Coffee County IL Coordinator, presented on program enrollment growth as a result of this partnership in Coffee County and six surrounding counties, Bedford, Moore, Franklin, Grundy and Warren. Since the partnership began, Coffee County IL has seen a 22% increase in the number of children registered – a total of 770 more children receiving 60 free books for their first five years.
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