Help Us Help Kids

Our mission is to encourage parents to begin reading to their children at birth, and to continue this especially in the first 5 years of life, as this is critically important to their future success!

This project has raised


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Project Completed

Pledge Incentives

$10.00 Level

3 Supporters

Your $10 gift can help us purchase a beautiful Mother Goose Nursery Rhyme newborn gift book.

$25.00 Level

15 Supporters

Your $25 gift can help us purchase eight new books for Carthage preschoolers!

$50.00 Level

5 Supporters

Your $50 gift can help us purchase 15 new books to help Carthage preschoolers learn to read! Please come by Cherry's to pick up your free gift as a literacy partner!

$100.00 Level

0 Supporters

We'd love to name YOU as being our partner in literacy with a donor acknowledgement sticker in 35 books given to Carthage kids. Please join us at Cherry's on Give Carthage Day for a free gift!

Project Overview

Carthage Family Literacy Council seeks to strengthen our community by creating more literate and better educated people. As Emilie Buchwald says, "children become readers on the laps of their parents." When parents understand the difference they can make in their child's educational success by spending 20 minutes a day reading with them, they are astounded! We do this by fundraising and partnering with other organizations who share our goals.

CFLC provides thousands of brand new books to Parents As Teachers each year that are handed out by their educators on home visits. 90% of these kids are low income families that may have never had any books to read to their kids! We give "indestructible" books to the youngest babies, board books to toddlers, and fun preschool picture books to 4 year olds. 

CFLC has built and maintains 7 Little Free Libraries around Carthage so that kids of all ages can have 24/7 access to free gently used books.

Each month, CFLC partners with Mercy and Freeman Hospitals in Joplin to distribute 175+ beautiful Mother Goose Nursery Rhyme gift book packets to newborns all over southwest Missouri. This contains a "Read to Me" bib and multiple bookmarks counseling parents on the value of reading to babies, a refrigerator magnet to serve as a daily reminder, and info from PAT inviting them to sign up for their free services. 

We provide two generous scholarships to CHS graduates that plan to go into early childhood education; we support Carthage Public Library financially for their annual summer reading programs; we provide approximately 400 free books to Carthage Police Department to give to their annual Christmas party for underprivileged children; we provide approximately 150 new backpacks to the Salvation Army each summer for their back to school giveaways.

All of this takes money, so we are asking for your generous support. We hope to raise at least $10,000 on Give Carthage Day. We ask our partners to refer to our webpage at to see photos of all the wonderful examples of the difference we are making in our community. Many more examples are found on the PAT page at The more you give, the more we will be able to pass on that blessing to little readers in our community! We thank you for your support in any amount!


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About Carthage Family Literacy Council

The purpose and mission of the Carthage Family Literacy Council is to promote early reading to babies (starting at birth) and continuing throughout the early childhood years. Research has shown this is the single most important factor in determining the future success of students.
To address this need, CFLC provides thousands of free new books each year to be distributed through Parents as Teachers in Carthage R-IX and Jasper County. We build and maintain Little Free Libraries for 24/7 access to free kids books around Carthage. CFLC also provides 150+ beautiful newborn book packages per month at Mercy and Freeman Hospitals to encourage parents to read to their child from birth. We provide two generous scholarships annually for CHS graduates planning on going into elementary education. We also support Carthage Public Library financially for their summer reading programs, and partner with Carthage Police Department to include books with gifts for the annual children’s Christmas Party. We partner with Salvation Army to provide free backpacks for their school supply giveaway, and now partner with Head Start in Carthage to provide space for increased enrollment in Early Head Start.

Carthage Family Literacy Council

Carthage, MO