We have a matching Grant, our first! All donations and pledges received by November 30 2019 qualify for the match: $1 for every $2 received!


Making books a Berkeley birthright.

We are a Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library Affiliate because it is a joyous thing for a child to get a gift book in the mail month after month. And, we believe creating a common core of excellent literature available to any child in a community can strengthen our social fabric. AND: research shows that books in the home increase early literacy and Kindergarten Readiness. Our goal is to saturate our city’s under-5 population with book ownership, then work to get IL programs going in other East Bay cities.

Imagination Library is an incredibly efficient and economical way to deliver excellent books to all children birth to age five in any given population.

Any Berkeley resident child birth to almost age 5 may be registered for our Imagination Library program. The Child, not the parent, is registered. No questions beyond age and address are used to determine eligibility. Parents may donate if they wish, donations and registrations are not connected.

Books from birth at home are the best tools in the best place at the best time to nurture roots of lifelong literacy.


Shop at smile.amazon.com/ch/46-1358633 and a % goes to us!

blk infant girl holding big book BIG SMILE pink hat shirt copy.jpg

Our Story


Research from around the world clearly shows that early literacy affects children's cognitive development, academic success, and even their life expectancy. Improving literacy doesn't have to be complex. The first step is getting books into children's hands. All children. That's why we founded The Berkeley Baby Book Project.

Continue Reading →


Our Programs


Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

Monthly Book delivery program

One book delivered by mail addressed to your child every month from birth to age five, at no cost: Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library books are a gift to the child. Available to any child under age 5 living in Berkeley, CA.



Baby Book Club

Family Engagement

Meet and play with other book-loving children from Berkeley. Enjoy a wide variety of hands-on activities, story reading, take-home books, and snacks (thanks, Clif Bar!).



Targeted Giving

Every child should see themselves refelcted in their books.

Seeing yourself in the books you read is powerful, and necessary. We work with local organizations to provide books reflecting families they serve. We purchase books featuring human characteres generally under-represented in children’s publishing for this program; it is not a part of Imagination Library.

We love discovering new authors and books. Getting a book in the mail is a very exciting treat for my toddler. We look forward to the monthly delivery and love that our friends are all reading the same book. It’s like a toddler book club!
— Parent of One of Our Registrants

Our Impact

It's tempting to sign up as many children as we can as quickly as we can. But we plan to help Berkeley's children build great personal libraries for generations. In order to succeed sustainably, we are starting small and setting up to expand with success. The community response so far has been outstandingly positive, and we're excited for the road ahead.

Here's what we've accomplished to date:



Personal Libraries Created

Since the creation of The BBBP, over 200 children have aged out of the Imagination Library program.




Currently receiving monthly books

Our numbers are growing steadily by word of mouth, and our goal is to serve the entire community.




Books Delivered

Since we began in  2015, we’ve delivered over 10,000 books directly into the hands of children.



Number of Books Delivered to Berkeley Children