School readiness begins at birth

Book Babies partners with parents of newborns, equipping them with the tools they need to prepare their children for kindergarten and beyond.

Our groundbreaking, evidence-informed home visiting program provides 20 new, age appropriate books to participating children and parents every year from birth until their children start kindergarten. Book Babies home visitors partner with parents  of more than 300 children ages 0 to 5 in two locations in North Carolina, Durham County and Forsyth County. Together, we set literacy goals for their children, mark their progress as they prepare for school, and help ensure that they start kindergarten ready to learn.

  • With 80% of brain development occurring in the first three years, access to books starting at birth is essential to kindergarten-readiness and long-term school success.
  • By the time a child graduates from Book Babies and starts kindergarten, she will have a home library of 100+ books and her parents will have received 10+ literacy coaching home visits.
  • Between home visits, we provide parents with a host of supports, including reading tips by text, parent book clubs, service on parent leadership teams, and family celebrations.

Book Babies launched in Durham County in 2013. In May 2018, our inaugural class of Book Babies graduated from the program, ready and eager to take kindergarten by storm! Read more about our inaugural graduation celebration (and check out our proud graduates in their caps and gowns!) in this reflection from Executive Director Ginger Young.

Also in 2018, Book Harvest was proud to collaborate with Imprints Cares to launch Book Babies in Winston Salem. Imprints Cares has a distinguished 50-year track record of providing excellent home visiting support to families in Forsyth County and is on track to enroll 80 newborns in Book Babies at Imprints Cares in its first year.

In 2017, Book Harvest embarked on an exciting and important partnership with external researchers to conduct a longitudinal randomized control trial evaluation of the Book Babies program. This RCT evaluation will be conducted in both Durham and Forsyth counties through the year 2024. It was preceded by a pilot evaluation, whose findings were very encouraging. Check out the executive summary of the 2017 findings and the press release about these findings. Read more details and download a pdf about the full evaluation here.

Our inaugural class of Book Babies graduates!


In 2018, 301 enrolled families received a total of 923 home visits through our Book Babies program. Read all the details from the year in our 2018 program report.

You can learn more about how to enroll in Book Babies here.

See what a Book Babies home visit looks like in this two-minute video: