Literacy Program

​​Parent reading to two children.Harborview's Literacy Program encourages reading to children as a way to stimulate brain development in the early years of life, develop early literacy skills and foster a love of books.

During every well child visit from birth to age 5, the provider gives a book that is appropriate for the child's age and stage of development. The Literacy Program focuses on children between the ages of 6 months to 5 years, although books for older children are welcome.


Supporting the Literacy Program

The program began with funds donated to the children's clinic by the construction crew working on building projects at the hospital. Clinic staff used the funds to purchase books, leading to the creation of the program. The program now distributes new and used books and sends volunteer readers to clinics throughout Harborview.

Here are a few ways you can support the Literacy Program:

Donate Books

The Literacy Program is always in need of new and gently used books that are developmentally and culturally appropriate. Hardcover picture books with brightly colored pictures and interesting stories are ideal.

Books about sensitive issues such as divorce, abuse or death cannot be accepted.

Monetary gifts

If you wish to give to this program, please contact UW Medicine Advancement at 206.543.6347.


Want to become a reader or volunteer at an upcoming event? Please call Volunteer Services at 206.744.3547.


Harborview Medical Center is a King County owned property