FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible?

A child who is 4 or younger and lives in the Bendigo area.

How much does the program cost?

The program is free to participating families. The cost to donors and sponsors is currently $72 per child per year.

Who chooses the books?

A panel of educators and librarians at Dollywood Foundation and Penguin books select the books each year. Books are chosen to be age appropriate and culturally diverse. Book lists change each year, so that siblings do not receive the same books as they age through the program.

How can you be sure that the parents will read the books to the children?

While the quality of parent-child reading experience is an important issue, several studies have found that simply the number of books available makes a difference for literacy-related outcomes in pre-school-aged children. The Bendigo Imagination Library takes the first critical step to put age appropriate books into homes. Program partners and volunteers who educate and encourage parents to read to their children provide additional literacy programs.

What if the parents can’t read?

Most “illiterate” adults actually read at about a third-grade level. Therefore, the majority of these books will actually be accessible to them, and the ability to read them to their children may in fact have an empowering result. In addition, older siblings and extended family members will enjoy reading the books with younger children, improving overall family literacy habits.

What if a child’s family moves?

The parents will be able to visit the website and update the address records. If the new address is within the eligibility zone, there will be no interruption in delivery. If a book is returned to the Post Office as undeliverable, a local volunteer collects it, and we make every attempt to discover a current address for the child. If the new address is within the eligible areas, the child will be re-enrolled at the new address. If the new address is out of the local eligible area, the child will no longer receive books. Undelivered books are re-donated within the local community.

What happens if a form is completed for a child who is not eligible (because of age or address?)

The child cannot be enrolled unless he/she meets eligibility requirements, and parents will be notified by e-mail or SMS.

Is there recognition for sponsors?

The top 4 sponsors of the Bendigo Imagination Library will be identified on the official Bendigo Imagination Library registration brochure, which is distributed throughout Bendigo. The Key sponsor(s) will be recognised in locally-produced materials that are displayed and distributed within Bendigo. Key sponsors also receive prominent recognition on the website, possibly on the mailing labels of the shipped books, in regular e-newsletters that are distributed to program participants, supporters, and community leaders.

Are donations tax deductible?

Yes. The Bendigo Imagination Library is a program of United Way Australia, which is a DGR registered organisation with tax-deductible status. 

What’s the best way to give?

A regular monthly donation of $7.50 (or more) for one book for one child is ideal. Gifts may be made by credit card, or via workplace giving. Please visit our Get Involved page for more information.

Have more questions? Get in contact and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.