Imagination Library

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library


United Way of Southeast Mississippi is now accepting applications to register children in Forrest, Lamar, and Marion counties for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library! Once registered, your child will receive, by mail, one age-appropriate book each month until age 5. Ensuring that children have access to books from the time they are born helps United Way reach its goal of improving early childhood education and kindergarten readiness for children in our community.


About Imagination Library

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a national program hosted throughout the country by local organizations. Dolly Parton started this book gifting program in 1995, originally in her home county in East Tennessee after being inspired by her own father’s inability to read and write.


How It Works

The cost for a year's worth of books is an estimated $30 per child. Thanks to donors and sponsorships, funding has been secured to cover this fee for children living in Columbia School District, Hattiesburg Public School District, Forrest County School District, Lamar County School District, and Marion County School District. The Petal Education Foundation funds children in Petal School District. If your child is between the ages of 0-5 and lives in Forrest, Lamar, or Marion counties, please register here:


Your child will receive their first book in about two months.


Is your child going to be four years old by September 1st? Click below to learn about one of our local Early Learning Collaboratives.

Thank you to our sponsors!

Citizens Bank

First Southern Bank

Forrest County Board of Supervisors

Hattiesburg Public Schools 

Idaho Forest Group

Lamar County School District

Marion County and Columbia Early Learning Collaborative

Patrick F. Taylor Foundation