Our Programs


Books At Birth

With the assistance of the RSVP volunteers, the C.I.D.S. nurses, and the Arnot Ogden Medical Center, FRPCV provides every newborn with a gift of a new board book and a message to parents that promotes reading in the family.

  • Places books into families' homes, increasing book ownership
  • Lets families know that it is never too early to start reading aloud to their babies
  • Starts a new community book tradition by celebrating the birth of the baby, one of the most joyous family events, with a book
  • Provides our community's families with a common book experience that crosses ethnic and socio-economic lines
  • Lets families know the importance and pleasure of reading to babies; reading aloud to babies creates a special bond between parent and child
  • Reading aloud to a child now will help the child have success learning to read later on.

Traveling Books

To foster the joys of reading aloud, Traveling Books brings together volunteer readers, fifteen family day care providers affiliated with the Child Care Council of Chemung County, and children each month. FRPCV volunteers will read a story or two aloud to the children and will leave about 25 books to be read aloud during the month. The volunteer will return with a new batch of books a month later and every month thereafter.

Because each volunteer will visit the same home each month, the bond among the children, their care provider, and the volunteer should become stronger as they read, talk, and laugh together, strengthening their love of literacy as well.

A community effort, this program has been funded by the generosity of the Anderson Foundation and the Park Church and shaped by the generosity of children's librarians and teachers who donated their time and expertise, selecting and ordering the books and training the volunteers.



Book Fest

Book Fest is a free annual event that offers book-centered fun to community familes. The Family Reading Partnership organizes the event and partners with individuals, organizations, and businesses throughout the area to bring parents and children together around the excitement of children's books.

  • Helps the community come together to celebrate children's literature

  • Heightens interest in books and promotes family reading

  • Encourages teaches to use books interactively in the classroom

  • Involves community organizations and individuals in the effort

  • Creates a show piece event for the community


Date Held

First Saturday in March


Diven Elementary School

1115 Hall St.

Elmira, NY


Bright Red Bookshelf

The Bright Red Bookshelf utilizes gently used books collected by FRPCV and distributes them on bright red bookshelves throughout the community at permanent locations.

In addition to the books at the self sustaining sites, last year we delivered 8,000 books to Bright Red Bookshelf sites. Gently used books collected for our program throughout the region over the past year total 11,058. Contributors include schools, businesses, agencies/organizations (state and private), hospitals, churches, labor unions and individual donations from families.

We continue to grow our highly motivated and energetic volunteer “Sort and Label Crew” who assist with cleaning, labeling and delivering books. In addition we have added a community service volunteer from St. John Fisher College. They are dedicated and committed and we cannot thank them enough!

  •  Increases book ownership by families
  •  Encourages parent-child interactions with books
  •  Involves community members in this literacy effort through book donations
  •  Enhances the services of organizations serving as bookshelf hosts by providing books for the families they already serve
  •  Keeps books circulating in the communty so that "no children's book is ever lonely."

Book ownership is important in fostering an interest in reading and a love for books. If parents are to read to their children, they need books to do so. Children feel pride in owning their own books. They develop confidence in reading and acquire mastery when books are easily within reach and can be read again and again. We believe that each book a child owns is an "appetizer" to library use.

Traveling Bright Red Bookshelf

Beginning in June and going through August the Bright Red Bookshelf can be found every Thursday in Elmira's Wisner Park at the Farmers' Market. The story telling tent is the cozy place where children can listen to stories read by volunteers. Before leaving the inviting site the children are encourage to take home a gently used book.


Collection Sites

  • Christmas House (July-December)
  • Cappy's
  • Arnot Mall
  • Jubilee Foods
  • Steve Seaberg State Farm Insurance -
  • Langdon Plaza
  • Tanglewood Nature Center
  • Wisnor Market FRPCV Tent

Distribution Sites

  • Arnot Ogden Hospital Emergency Waiting Room
  • Big Flats Community Center
  • CCC Academic and Workforce Development Center--Madison Ave. Elmira
  • Chemung County Child Advocacy Center--Hoffman St. Elmira
  • Chemung County Human Resource Center-- Pennsylvania Ave. Elmira
  • Chemung County WIC Office
  • CIDS--Sullivan St. Elmira
  • Schuyler County Human Service Complex-Family Play and Resource Center
  • St. Joseph’s Hospital-Out Patient/Emergency Room Waiting Area
  • Tanglewood Nature Center

Reach Out and read

ROR distributes between 6000 and 7000 books each year. An important function of ROR is the volunteer reader program. As children wait for their pediatric appointments they are read to in the waiting room. This program allows for children to enjoy being read to and serves as a vehicle to model reading out loud for parents. ROR thanks our readers for their dedicated service.

Seven primary care practices in Chemung County participate in this program. Over 7000 brand-new books are given to children and their families each year through this program.

  • Encourages parents to include books and reading aloud as a special part of everyday life for their children
  • Increases positive family and child interaction
  • Increases book ownership for all children and families
  • Helps all children to enter school ready to learn

"Read To Me" Banners


With the help and generosity of many supporters FRPCV is able to display these banners on the sides of buildings throughout the community spreading the "read together" message.

The banners are colorful illustrations created by local and national children’s book illustrators, including Elmira’s own Tedd Arnold. The banners come in two sizes, a 9x12’ billboard size and a smaller 3x4’ size. 16 large banners have been hung inside or outside different buildings in our community.

Similar banners have been hung in Ithaca by the Ithaca Family Reading Partnership. A third grade teacher in Ithaca commented, “We love being surrounded by the “Read To Me” message. The banners reflect what we value as a community-- children, families, reading, and art.”


Read For the Record

FRPCV works to facilitate the national program, Jumpstart, on a local level by encouraging children to join in the nationwide effort to read a particular book on a specific day as a means of promoting the benefits of reading.