The Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL), the Castlegar & District Public Library and the Interior Health Authority partner to offer the Books for Babies program in Castlegar.
Every year, the program distributes 110-130 book bags to families with newborn babies. Each bag contains a board book, a Lullaby and Rhymes CD, a booklet “Babies Love Books, a Guide for Grownups,” information on the library and other literacy programs for families, and gifts from community schools and other organizations in the community.
This year we are very grateful for funding support from the Friends of the Library for an amount of $750 and to the Castlegar Early Childhood Advisory Council for the amount of $500. With these donations we are able to continue this program for another year. Together we have made it possible so every new baby will receive a book bag.
Why are the Books for Babies so important? Denise Talarico, our local Public Health Nurse says it best: “The Books for Babies program is an extremely effective way to introduce the importance of early literacy in the overall development of a child. As health professionals, we know the link between early literacy and increased success in the school system.
Research has also established the link between literacy and health. The Books for Babies program is a shining example of an “upstream approach” which will have positive effects on education and health down the road.”