Junior Leadership of Medina County Joins Ohio Governor and First Lady for Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library Program Workshop
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Participants from Junior Leadership of Medina County met with Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio First Lady Fran DeWine about efforts to expand the Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library (OGIL) Program into Medina County. Junior Leadership Director, Carrie Park, took eight students down to Columbus in order to attend a workshop at COSI and learn more about the OGIL. After the workshop, Park and the students; Jimmy DeJongh (Highland), Gracelin Gorman (MCCC), Elizabeth Oberhaus (Highland), Chase Marquis (Highland), Ian Morgan (Medina), Collin Spittle (Highland), Molly Stillwagon (Highland), and Emily Winnicki (Cloverleaf) were invited to a holiday social at the governor’s home.
Currently, the OGIL Program is active in 54 Ohio counties, but not Medina County. The goal is to expand the program so all eligible children in Ohio can enroll in 2020. Junior Leadership participants accepted the challenge of bringing the program here. The juniors who participated were motivated to be part of the program by their own positive experiences of being read to as young children.
“I have countless fond memories of my dad reading to me as a child.” said Ian Morgan. “I see the OGIL as an exciting opportunity that will evoke positive change in Medina County.”
Molly Stillwagon said, “Books have provided me with so much more than simply learning to read. I want to give children the chance to discover this for themselves and the OGIL is a great program that gives children this opportunity.”
The OGIL Program, a nonprofit organization, is partnering with the Dolly Parton Imagination Library to promote early childhood literacy by providing a new book to children every month from the time they are born until the age of five. The books are free to the child, with the state providing a dollar for dollar match with the local affiliate.
“Brain science shows the first years of a child’s life are the most important,” said Ohio First Lady Fran DeWine. “Mike and I are passionate about bringing the OGIL Program to every Ohio child who is eligible in every county and every zip code. We know it’ll make a difference, because it’s something we’ve seen for years firsthand reading to our kids and grandkids.”