For more than 20 years the Book Bank was part of the nonprofit organization, Baltimore Reads Inc. In that time the Book Bank provided over 1.8 million books to children, teachers, schools and other organizations saving those who received the books over 14 million dollars and providing vital educational resources to those in need.
Over time the Book Bank grew in scope to include the Home Library Program for second grade students in participating schools as well as our social enterprise book selling operation which helped fund the organization's programs.
On March 1, 2014, the Book Bank and its programs were acquired by The Maryland Book Bank, a separate and independent nonprofit organization.
We are energetically and passionately continuing the work of getting free books into the hands of children. Our mission is driven from the understanding that children in low income areas have an average of 1 book at home while children of middle income households have an average of 54 books at home. We also know that children of low income families spend an average of 100 hours being read to by another person up until the third grade, but a child growing up in a middle income home is read to for an average of 1,000 hours by the third grade! The result is a staggering disparity in reading proficiency. Children who can't read at grade level by the third grade are 16% more likely to drop out of high school and 50% of incarcerated people have reading deficiencies.
These are just some of the reasons why it is important to help build home, school, and classroom libraries and why The Maryland Book Bank continues to provide free books to those in need. We hope you will join us in this effort.