By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Get ready to support children’s literacy
Donations sought to send books to area kids
dolly parton library logo

To celebrate National Book Month, the United Way of Central Kansas is partnering with Barton County Young Professionals to host an online Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library fundraiser this October, UWCK Executive Director Gaila Demal said.

“There are two reasons for this fundraising campaign,” she said. “The first is to bring awareness to the DPIL program and the second is to help raise funds to continue the program in Barton and Pawnee counties.” 

The groups will seek $30 donations from the public, which is the average cost to send monthly DPIL books to a local child for one year. Five business sponsors have provided a pool of funds that make it possible for the first 250-plus children sponsored by a $30 donation to be matched, helping even more children in the area.

“A special thank you to First Kansas Bank, Harper Camperland, The University of Kansas Health System Great Bend Campus, Fuller Industries LLC, and Wheatland Electric Cooperative, Inc. for these generous donations,” Demel said. “These funds will allow us to get even more books in the hands of children ages up to 5.”

DPIL is a book gifting program that gives free books to children from birth to age five in participating communities within the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Republic of Ireland. Over 25,000 books have been delivered to children in Barton and Pawnee counties since the DPIL program was launched locally in 2012. 

“The DPIL program delivers these books directly to children’s homes at no cost to the family,” Demel said. In September, free books were delivered to 550 local children.

Those wanting to donate to this project can do so by:

• Going online at

• By mailing a check to United Way of Central Kansas (1125 Williams Street Great Bend, KS 67530). Those sending a check need to make the check payable to UWCK and write “DPIL” in the memo. 

For for more information on how businesses and organizations can donate, contact the United Way of Central Kansas at 620-792-2403 or