When The Heart of America Foundation first began promoting literacy and service in schools, one need became starkly apparent: most students did not have age-appropriate, engaging books in their homes, and many classrooms and school library shelves were bare. Since then, HOA has provided more than one million children with more than 3.4 million library and take-home books (with a value of more than $21.7 million), focusing on high-need elementary schools where at least 65% of students receive free and reduced-price meals. Engaging volunteers, families, students, and school communities in the rebuilding process, HOA's Books From the Heart program replenishes school, classroom, and home libraries. And books are just the first chapter. HOA's READesign program brings students and volunteers together to give school libraries a much-needed makeover with artwork, furniture, technology, and (of course) new books; more books go home with each student so that the idea of a home library can take root. Since 1997, 215 libraries have been reborn. You can bring a new library (and with it, a new heart) to a school near you.
Headquarters: MD-Prince George's County
Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; MD-Statewide; VA-Statewide; We work nationally, across the U.S.
Age Groups Served: Pre-K (3-4); Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17)
Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Asian American; Caucasian; Latino/Hispanic; Native American; Other
Population(s) Served: Students; Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members
Awards & Recognition
Heart of America Foundation was nominated in February 2009 to receive a Leadership Greater Washington award as a favorite youth-focused non-profit.
Heart of America received Target's 2008 Best of The Bullseye-Innovation award, for our work making over public school libraries.
Heart of America was referenced in the 2007 Senate Resolution 134, designating September 2007 Adopt a School Month.
Heart of America’s co-founder, Angela L. Halamandaris, was named Junior League of Northern Virginia’s “Woman of Vision” in Spring 2007. The Woman of Vision Award recognizes an outstanding female leader whose energy, passion, and dedication aligns to the JLNV mission of women building better communities. Award winners demonstrate exemplary service, initiative, and vision, and are an inspiration to others in the local as well as global community. Previous Junior League of Northern Virginia Woman of Vision award recipients include Alma J. Powell, Chair of America’s Promise Alliance (2005) and Molly Barker, Founder of Girls on the Run (2006).
- The current budget for The Heart of America Foundation is: $3 million or higher
- $1 million to $3 million
- $500k to $1 million
- Less than $500k
Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to
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