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Accessing books has become a lot easier for children living in poor communities. The White House reports that it issued more than 1 million access codes in the first week of its Open eBooks initiative.

The initiative provides thousands of digital books worth $250 million free to students through an e-reader app. This is not a federal program but a collaborative effort with libraries, publishers and nonprofit organizations.

Over the next three years, the partners plan to add new and expanded content to the collection, as well as improved functionality of the app.

Last year when President Barack Obama announced the program, he explained that it would provide access to “young people who maybe don’t have as many books at home or don’t always have access to a full stock of reading materials,” NBC News reported.

According to the president’s community service initiative, United We Serve, there is one age-appropriate book for every 300 children in low-income communities. In contrast, children in middle-income communities have on average 13 age-appropriate books per child.

Any adult who works in a Title I (or Title I eligible) school, program or library that serves at least 70 percent of children from low-income families can sign up and request access codes for Open eBooks.

To learn more, visit


SOURCE: White House | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty 


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