Governor Laura Kelly Empowers Kansas Children’s Cabinet to Boost Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

By Trish Svoboda

Today, March 15th, Governor Laura Kelly enacted Senate Bill 195, giving the Kansas Children’s Cabinet the authority to form a nonprofit entity, as stated in a release. This organization is intended to accept donations, gifts, and grants, and to participate in fundraising efforts for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.

In July, Governor Kelly declared that all Kansas children from birth to five years old are now qualified to join the program, which provides a free, high-quality book suitable for their age every month until they turn five. In August, Dolly Parton was greeted in Kansas by Governor Kelly to commemorate the program’s expansion across the state.

“Well Kansas, we did it! Let’s celebrate by registering as many children and families as we can to receive the gift of Imagination Library books right to their home each month,” said Dolly Parton. “Together, we can inspire children across Kansas to love books and reading, and that’s a gift that will last a lifetime.”

Last year, Governor Kelly and the Kansas Legislature increased funding for the Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund, enabling the program to expand statewide. By accepting private donations, the book gifting program can broaden its influence, promoting reading in Kansas and enhancing early childhood development and literacy skills.

As of March 1, 2024, the program has enrolled 74,720 children in Kansas. Since the announcement of the program’s statewide expansion by Governor Kelly last July, nearly 26,000 children have been enrolled. Parents can enroll children in the Imagination Library of Kansas here.

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