Lack of access to books and educational materials is a major problem in the United States, especially in underprivileged communities. And, forty-two percent of children in the United States — more than 30 million — live in low-income households and don’t have age-appropriate books at home or at school.* Cheerios recognize access to books as one barrier to literacy development, which is why it continues to distribute quality books inside boxes to children nationwide.
To help put books into the little hands that need them most, Cheerios will also give 50,000 children’s books and $300,000 to First Book, an award winning literacy nonprofit.
Worms, monsters, zebras and hippopotamuses are only a few of the imaginative children’s book characters to appear in specially-marked Cheerios® this year as part of the Cheerios Spoonfuls of Stories® program. Through the program, which is celebrating its 10-year anniversary this spring, Cheerios distributes six million bilingual children’s books from award-winning authors free inside cereal boxes. Tuesday in Los Angeles, actress and mom Jennie Garth kicked off the anniversary celebration at a special reading event with the Mayor of Los Angeles. Similar events will be happening in cities across the country over the coming weeks.
This year’s in-pack book offerings, all of which are from award-winning authors, appropriate for children ages three to eight and from Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, are:
· Peeny Butter Fudge, by Toni and Slade Morrison and illustrated by Joe Cepeda
· Mostly Monsterly, by Tammi Sauer and illustrated by Scott Magoon
· Noodle & Lou, by Elizabeth Garton Scanlon and illustrated by Arthur Howard
· If I Were a Jungle Animal, by Amanda Ellery and illustrated by Tom Ellery
· Hello Baby, by Mem Fox and illustrated by Steve Jenkins
· Can I Just Take a Nap?, by Ron Rauss and illustrated by Rob Shepperson
Cheerios, America’s No. 1 cereal, debuted in 1941 as Cheerioats. The nation’s first ready-to-eat oat cereal has since become one of the most trusted and recognized brands in America. In fact, one of every 10 boxes of cereal sold in America is a box of Cheerios. General Mills’ popular franchise includes Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios, Multi Grain Cheerios, Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter, Chocolate Cheerios, Frosted Cheerios, Fruity Cheerios, Apple Cinnamon Cheerios, Dulce de Leche Cheerios, Berry Burst Cheerios, Yogurt Burst Cheerios, Banana Nut Cheerios and Cheerios Crunch. Cheerios also has a publishing division that includes the popular Cheerios Play Books and other activity books.
For more information, go to www.cheerios.com.
About General Mills
One of the world's leading food companies, General Mills operates in more than 100 countries and markets more than 100 consumer brands, including Cheerios, Häagen-Dazs, Nature Valley, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, Green Giant, Old El Paso, Progresso, Yoplait, Cascadian Farm, Muir Glen, and more. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, General Mills had fiscal 2010 global net sales of US$16 billion, including the company’s $1.2 billion proportionate share of joint venture net sales.
About First Book
First Book has distributed more than 90 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. By making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education.