Last week was a big one for us.

Part of a strategic plan in the works for over a year – we finally got to announce a major commitment to expand Books for Keeps into 14 additional elementary schools across Georgia over the next three years.

That commitment, formally announced at at meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in Atlanta, allowed us to reprise an appearance at the CGI America meeting made by Melaney Smith, the Books for Keeps founder, in 2011. Oh, how we’ve grown since then! We nearly tripled our program, hired two full-time employees, and grew outside our little home community of Athens. We were honored that Melaney was invited back to present our commitment on stage during Day 2 of the CGI meeting, while Executive Director Leslie Hale represented Books for Keeps during the full two-day event.

Officially, finally, we could say it: by 2019, Books for Keeps will be serving 11,000 children annually all over Georgia – including every child attending a Clarke County elementary school. Five of those schools will be in Atlanta, and another three in rural Georgia counties, starting with Elberton. That’s 140,000 books given away annually.

While last week was big – appearing on a big stage, making a major announcement – much of the work lies ahead. We will triple our program reach over the next three years. That means going out and getting the community buy-in – from EVERY corner of the community – necessary to serve 7,000 new students at 14 new schools.

Can we do it? We sure can – but only with the help of people like you. Make a donation, make an introduction, sign up for our newsletter – or just spread the word.

Want to help, [...]