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2,500 Nashville Youth Get Free Books This Summer

July 17, 2013

Educational Publisher Rosen Publishing Donates 10,000 Books to Metro

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Karl Dean helped distribute free books to children and teens today at the Metro Parks summer program at Coleman Park Community Center in partnership with educational publisher Rosen Publishing and local nonprofit Book’em. Through Rosen Publishing’s donation of 10,000 books, 2,500 children and teens enrolled in summer programs at Metro Parks will get free books to take home this summer.

“We know that reading is not only the key to educational success, but book ownership helps kids discover a love of reading,” Mayor Dean said. “I want to thank Rosen Publishing and Book’em for helping make sure more Nashville children have the opportunity to own more books. Whether children check out books from the city library or receive books through generous programs like this one, reading helps them learn about the world and open doors to their future.”

Rosen Publishing has made similar donations in other cities as part of its initiative to increase book ownership among children, especially those from low-income communities. Those cities include Charlotte, N.C.; Kansas City, Mo.; St. Louis, Mo.; Hartford, Conn.; Lafayette, La.; and Buffalo, N.Y.

“Rosen believes that instilling a love of reading is one of the single most important factors in guaranteeing all children a chance of success,” said Roger Rosen, CEO of the New York City-based publisher. “As the publisher of high interest, curriculum-correlated materials, we hope these books will add to the number of books children own and, in some cases, provide the first book in that child’s home collection. We know that Nashville is a city of people who love to read and learn, so we are thrilled to partner with Metro and Book’em on this project.”

Children and teens who are enrolled in Metro Parks’ free summer programs will get four books each to take home with them, including titles like: “I Am An Astronaut,”  “Cooper, Fly Hunter,” “Becka Goes to the North Pole,” “Circle of Fire,” “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,” “Call of the Wild,” and “Dracula.”
“Book’em distributes about 60,000 books a year in Davidson County, so a donation of this size is quite significant,” said Melissa Spradlin, executive director of Book’em. “Research shows that if children will read just four books before school starts back up, they can prevent learning loss that typically happens during the summer break.”

Promoting literacy is a priority to Mayor Dean, whose initiatives include Limitless Libraries, which opens the city’s library system to Metro Schools students and school libraries; Share A Book, the city’s multi-faceted reading campaign; and Nashville Reads, a Nashville Library program to get the whole city reading the same book at the same time.

About Rosen Publishing
Since 1950, New York City-based Rosen Publishing has served the needs of students in grades Pre-K-12 with high interest, curriculum-correlated materials.  Rosen is partnering with communities and non-profits to put more than 250,000 books in the homes and in the hands of children across the country. Rosen is donating over $5 million in new educational books as part of this national initiative.

About Book’em
Founded in Nashville in 1989, Book’em is a nonprofit organization focusing on two core areas: the collection and distribution of books to children and teens in lower-income families who might not otherwise have books of their own; and providing volunteer readers to local preschools and elementary schools.