Eight Waves launches Books for Babies initiative

The initiative, in partnership with Orlando Health, aims to foster early childhood literacy and bonding.

Photo courtesy of Eight Waves
  • West Orange Times & Observer
  • News
  • Share

Eight Waves has launched its new Books For Babies initiative in partnership with Orlando Health.

Eight Waves — a nonprofit located in Winter Garden that invests in the lives of children, youth and families who live in under-resourced communities — took to social media to announce the partnership with the Orlando Health South Lake Hospital last week. 

In the announcement, Eight Waves representatives said 1,500 babies and their families will be going home with a new board book this year, along with a brochure filled with helpful resources. 

"Eight Waves' Books For Babies initiative, in Partnership with Orlando Health, is delighted to announce a heartwarming initiative aimed at fostering early childhood literacy and bonding," said Sara Meyer, founder and executive director of Eight Waves. "From the very first moments of life, we believe in the power of reading to enrich the lives of babies and their families. This initiative ensures that every baby born at South Lake Orlando Health Hospital receives a wonderful welcome into the world of books."

Meyer said the initiative will reach thousands of families, turning the simple act of reading into a daily ritual of love, learning and discovery.

Participants in the program will obtain an informative pamphlet, carefully curated with resources to support early childhood development and literacy. This guide offers tips on reading to a newborn, the importance of early literacy and ways to engage a baby during reading time. 

In addition, participants will receive a gifted, brand-new, age-appropriate board book. These books will be selected by parents from a cart a nurse brings into their room days after delivery. 

According to Eight Waves officials, research shows the first three years of a child’s life are critical for brain development, with reading playing a significant role in language acquisition, listening skills and emotional bonding. 

Reading aloud to babies can enhance vocabulary, build connections, stimulate imagination and support emotional growth.

"Eight Waves' Books For Babies program is committed to the well-being and development of the youngest members of our community," Meyer said. "We are so incredibly grateful to our partners that made this initiative happen, including the Horizon West Rotary Club, the Bloom & Grow Garden Society, Modern Woodmen of America, Uncle Matt's Organic, Orlando Health and incredible behind-the-scenes volunteers for making sure every baby receives a book. ... Together, we are taking the first steps toward a brighter, more literate future for every child born in our care. Through this partnership, we aspire to make a positive impact on the lives of new families, encouraging reading habits that will benefit children for years to come."

For more information on how to participate or contribute to the Books For Babies initiative, contact Eight Waves by clicking here.



Annabelle Sikes

News Editor Annabelle Sikes was born in Boca Raton and moved to Orlando in 2018 to attend the University of Central Florida. She graduated from UCF in May 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in sociology. Her past journalism experiences include serving as a web producer at the Orlando Sentinel, a reporter at The Community Paper, managing editor for NSM Today, digital manager at Centric Magazine and as an intern for the Orlando Weekly.

Latest News