Meet Our Members
Each and every individual First Book Canada member has a story to tell. Inspirational, emotional, empowering; their collective voices make up the First Book Canada Network.
The First Book Canada Network — the largest and fastest growing network of educators serving children in need — forms a powerful market with a unified voice and real purchasing power. With their feedback, and through their collective market force, we make the most needed and relevant books, educational resources, and other essentials available at the lowest possible cost.
Thanks to First Book Canada, educators and programs serving children in need can stretch limited resources, improving access to quality education.
Durham District School Board
“I have friends at 3 different boards that I have recommended First Book Canada to. I service students who have never owned a book in their lives and now they are excited about picking titles that they want to read and take home. Your program has touched the lives of dozens of our students alone. We are very grateful!”
— Lynn Gittens, Teacher-Librarian | Durham, ON
“First Book Canada is an AMAZING program that actually CARES about the lives of children. This is evidenced by their commitment in low priced books and supplies, as well as free books to low income children. I am also very impressed by your caring and committed staff. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts here at Youngstown Elementary School.”
— LeAnn Méndez, Grade 3 Teacher | Edmonton, AB
Flagstaff County, AB
“I cannot even begin to tell you the impact of First Book Canada on our Building Blocks program. We could NEVER afford the quality books we can get from First Book Canada if we had to buy in a bookstore. Because of First Book Canada, we don’t have to look for even more grant funding to continue to build literacy skills among our Counties families who are most in need.”
— Joanne McMahon, Building Blocks/Flagstaff County Coordinator | Flagstaff County, AB
Coast Mountains School District
“Keep doing what you are doing, I’ve shared information about this organization with everyone I know, some do not believe that you offer free books but I continue to spread the good word.”
— Joshua Boldt, Teacher / Literacy Coordinator | Hazelton, BC
Halifax Regional Centre for Education
“I hear over and over, ‘We can keep the book? I don’t have to bring it back?’ and ‘It’s mine?’ I had one Primary class write thank you notes to me for the books I gave them from our last shipment from you folks. It was their idea. They asked their teacher if they could make me cards. She was so proud of them. And teachers were excited that some of the books we received supported lessons that were happening in the classroom, like animal habitats, Medieval Times, flight. Really helpful. Thank you so much.”
— Edwina Thomas, Library Support Specialist | Dartmouth, NS
Toronto District School Board
“First Book Canada has made a lasting impact on my school because of their dedication to get books into the hands of students. Many of the families in my school community face challenges that come with poverty and so their financial focus is on what they need to survive, not the luxury of the latest and newest book. I remember the first time that First Book Canada donated to my school and hearing the student feedback. I had several students ask me if they were really allowed to keep the book. The sense of happiness and pride that went across their faces when they realized it was their book to take home and share with their family was priceless. First Book Canada doesn’t just give books away they initiate the sparks that fuel for better readers.”
— Elizabeth Baltazar, Grade 5 Teacher | Toronto, ON
Mothers Matter Centre
“In 2015 HIPPY Canada struck a partnership between First Book Canada to support our Adopt-A -Reader Campaign, an annual three-week program that encourages HIPPY parents to adopt and mentor non-HIPPY parents in a daily routine of reading to their children. Over 4,000 newcomer, refugee, and Indigenous families with preschool children have received over 20,000 high-quality children’s book thanks to our fortuitous collaboration with First Book Canada.”
— Deborah Bell, President/CEO | Vancouver, BC
Port Alberni, BC
Literacy Alberni Society
“As a non-profit dedicated to addressing the diverse literacy and learning needs of our community, we know that providing access to books is the first and most important step in encouraging literacy development. Access to books has also been found to be the most successful way to improve the reading achievement of low-income children. Because of First Book Canada, every child in our community has no less than 2 new books of their own in their home, and every year the number of age and reading-level appropriate books children have access to in our community continues to grow.
Simply put, First Book Canada equips us what we need to provide our community’s children with what they need to learn, grow, and reach their potential.
First Book Canada and the incredible opportunities they make possible for organizations like ours and children across the country is invaluable. First Book Canada is by-far the most impactful, accessible, barrier-free service provider I’ve had the honor to work with and to have in our corner.”
— Graham Hughes, Executive Director | Port Alberni, BC
Books with Wings, a First Nations Literacy Project
“First Book Canada has been a significant source of resources for us for many years; we’ve purchased thousands of books from the First Book Canada Marketplace to help create small, personal libraries for Indigenous children living on isolated reserves. We’re incredibly grateful to First Book Canada for their low prices and high quality materials. It’s a wonderful and meaningful program.”
— Anna Rosner (on the right), Ph.D., Director | Various, Canada