When I started working for Ella Fitzgerald, back in the 'nineties, I was absolutely amazed at how many books she had in her Beverly Hills home. Books stacked on the coffee table, books by the fireplace, books in the cabinets - and overflowing bookshelves.
Ella loved to read.
Miss Violet Sophia enjoying some of her favorite books
So when I found out that the kids attending the Ella Fitzgerald Child Care Center (in the L.A. suburb of Lynnwood) didn't have any books in their homes, I was horrified.
To fix that problem, we started our A BOOK JUST FOR ME! book give-away program.
Here's how it works:
We are able to provide books to one hundrednon-profit organizations per year - we are running at capacity at this time, but when we get openings, I'll post the news. So keep an eye on our website.
Meanwhile, please encourage everyone you know to visit their Public Libraries - a truly vital resource and they are FREE! Not only do libraries provide a wide range of books, most of them have great Story Hours - so much fun for kids.
Jeremy spends time reading to his kids, hope you do, too!
And if you love books and kids as much as Ella did, you'll be interested in our "Spotlight on Books" which describes a great children's book - a new one each month. Just look below for this month's choice.
What book should you get for your kids this month?
Written by Nancy Furstinger
for Middle School and High School students
Ella Fitzgerald could sing Irving Berlin's songs like no one else.
So we decided to learn more about this Berlin guy.
After all, he wrote so many songs that are a beloved
part of the Great American Songbook.
We found out that English wasn't even Mr. Berlin’s first language; he was born in Russia and didn't learn English until his family moved to New York when Irving was about five years old. His name wasn't even IRVING BERLIN- he was born Isidore Israel Bailine.
(though there is some disagreement on the spelling)
We learned so much from this book in a very enjoyable
manner. We think you will enjoy it, too. How about
emailing us and letting us know?
Our local public library has a copy, our son's school library does, too.
And I just saw the other day on Amazon.com.
Not everyone can get to New York City
to see a Broadway musical,
but anyone can go to the Library and check out this book.
Does your child have a favorite music-related book?
email us and tell us all about it.
Miss Imani Pullum, daughter of our local music/education hero, Fernando Pullum, enjoys a book about music.
Do you have a memory you would like to share? Please email us, we'd love to hear from you.
Daniel Crasnick grabs some time between baseball games to read to his sister, Sophia
Photo by Aunt Laurie.
The kids at the Wisdom Academy for Young Scientists in South L.A. love to read!
Send us an email and let us know how you like this month’s book.
We are proud of our A BOOK JUST FOR ME! program - we estimate that we have placed new books into the hands and homes of about 400,000 children since we began the program. That's pretty good for a small Foundation.
Here is a brief sampling of the organizations who currently participate:
The Venice Family Clinic
(Greater Los Angeles area)
St. Joseph's Medical Center
The Lennox School District
(near Los Angeles International Airport)
Hollywood Boys and Girls Club
(in the heart of Hollywood, CA)
University of Southern California Community Dental Clinics
The Assistance League North Coast
(San Diego, CA)
ChildSight-Helen Keller Worldwide
We are grateful to our dear friends up at in Canada our source for books.