Our programs uniquely combine community,
service and literacy and are aligned with our focus which is to provide children in need everywhere with the tools to read, succeed and make a difference.
Operation: BuddyPack gives those who care a simple way to help the youngest victims of Hurricane Sandy. By joining together and enlisting our friends, we can supply these children with brand new backpacks full of toiletries, books and other essential supplies. The Heart of America Foundation works directly with impacted school districts and schools to get greatly-needed supplies and books into the hands of children as quickly as possible. The Heart of America will also donate additional books to help replenish school libraries in affected areas. In 2005, The Heart of America Foundation launched Operation: BuddyPack and mobilized volunteers to deliver 40 tons of books, supplies and BuddyPacks directly into the hands of Hurricane Katrina’s youngest victims in the Gulf Coast areas within six weeks. Time is of the essence. Act now and help those that are in desperate need!
Books From The Heart® has two components: the first is a book giveaway program in elementary schools. Schools and students receive brand-new, age-appropriate books to replenish school libraries, classroom libraries and home libraries. During book distributions, staff and volunteers introduce older children to ways they can make a difference in their communities; younger children are engaged in the program via read-alouds. This program also supports the READesign program’s literacy component by providing brand new books for the newly renovated libraries and books for students to take home. • The second component engages children in community service via book drives. Children collect new and like-new books that are not being used, and Heart of America matches these donations with under-resourced elementary schools, so that we can get more books into the hands of children in need and onto the empty shelves of school libraries. The project introduces young people to community service and is designed to engage them in determining need, gathering and distributing resources, and providing them with encouragement and tools to develop problem-solving skills.
READesign® “library makeover” program aims to transform school libraries by redecorating, revitalizing technology, and replenishing book shelves. The program renews community support and interest in enriching student lives and helping students regain lost opportunities for learning. READesign engages volunteers, local youth, corporate team members and other members of the community in service and community involvement through library beautification and improvement activities, book distributions and one-on-one reading activities with children. • Each READesign “library makeover” includes new technology, vibrant paint, artwork by a nationally recognized artist, new furniture, 1,000-2,000 new, high-quality library books, and up to seven books per child to add to their personal home libraries. The project provides tangible results in the form of a revitalized library and a school/home environment that is saturated with books, as well as the intangible results of engaging people in caring, compassionate community service to children in need.
Heroes of the Heart® is a recognition program that identifies inspirational individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to enrich the lives of others. This program also includes two scholarships: The Christopher Reeve Award is presented each year to an outstanding youth who has demonstrated tremendous courage and compassion in serving his or her community. The Gee Whiz Kids™ Award is designed to honor exemplary individuals, ages 12 and under, who represent the best of their schools and communities.