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DENVER -- It may be hard to imagine, but for many families books, even children’s books, are a luxury.
“Parents are working to pay bills and rent and keep that roof over their head and buy food and there's not just that money to buy a book,” said Kristen Baluyot, the director of Family programs for the Salvation Army.
Studies have shown just how important exposing kids to books and words at a young age are to increasing vocabularies as kids grow older. That’s why Denver7 partners with the Salvation Army to collect new and used books to hand out to kids in need.
“For some kids it may be the first book that they've ever owned,” Baluyot said.
Over the past three years, Denver7 has distributed more than 63,000 books, many of them through the afterschool programs offered by the Salvation Army.
The Salvation Army’s larger mission is to provide food, emergency assistance and shelter to families in need, but they say the book drives help with their overall goal of helping provide stability to families in need.
“Part of our focus is family housing and being able to keep kids in their homes because that keeps kids in their schools,” Baluyot added.