The Friends of The City Library Leads New Program to Donate $12,500 Worth of Books to Children

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted our community in many ways, and has had major impacts on schooling for Salt Lake City’s students. Low-income youth are at a particular risk of falling behind because of obstacles in accessing online resources. The Friends of The City Library and The City Library have launched the new Books For Children program to get books into the hands of young students. By encouraging kids, tweens, and teens to read through book ownership, we hope to help fill the education gap the students may be currently experiencing.

The free books were distributed August 4–6, 2020, at local community learning centers as part of the Salt Lake Education Foundation’s food distribution program, which currently offers supplemental food to students in need. “Education changes lives. We are appreciative of The City Library for their generous contribution to support our students during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said James Yapias, Director of the Salt Lake Education Foundation.

In addition to helping low-income students, Books For Children is supporting The King’s English, a local bookstore, by purchasing the books directly from them. The Friends of the City Library donated $10,000 to purchase the new books. Through their own efforts, The King’s English raised $2,500 to supplement the $10,000 the Friends donated.

“The Friends of The City Library are excited to be able to respond to our current moment and help get books into the hands of those that need them. Working with The King’s English allowed us to partner with a local bookseller on this initiative. Both of our organizations are passionate about literacy and learning and providing books to children is something everyone can get behind!” said Jeff Mower, Executive Director of The Friends of The City Library. Mower added, “This is certainly a project we would like to see continue.”