GOLD2024

First Book

Eliminating Barriers and Inspiring Young Minds.

aka First Book Marketplace   |   Washington, DC   |  www.firstbook.org

Mission

Imagine a world where every child experiences the benefits of a quality education. We're on a mission to ensure that all children, regardless of their background or zip code, can succeed-- by removing barriers to equitable education.

Ruling year info

1992

President, Co-founder, and CEO

Kyle Zimmer

Main address

1319 F Street NW Suite 1000

Washington, DC 20004 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

52-1779606

NTEE code info

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2022, 2021 and 2020.
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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

First Book believes that education offers children in need the best path out of poverty. But 31 million kids who live in underserved communities are not getting the education they need: • 44 percent of all U.S. children come from low-income families. • Poverty is reshaping education: 51 percent of public school students are in need, often coming to school without even their basic needs met and under extreme stress. • Public education is underfunded: 23 states spend less on public education than they did a decade ago. School and youth programs are challenged for means to keep children engaged and learning, creating an urgent need for resources. • The economic devastation is deep and broad: According to McKinsey & Co, the effect of an inequitable education system is the equivalent of a national recession. Poor educational outcomes lead to rising health care and justice system costs; lost tax dollars, competitiveness, and workers; and unrealized opportunities for children in need.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

The First Book Network

The First Book Network is North America's largest and fastest growing community of individual educators and practitioners working with children in need at schools and programs across the U.S. First Book members work in classrooms, after school, summer or early childhood programs, shelters, faith-based organizations and health clinics, libraries, community programs, military support programs, and other settings serving a majority of children in need.

Population(s) Served
Teachers
Economically disadvantaged people
Children and youth

First Book launched the Stories for All Project™ as a market-driven solution to increase diverse voices in children’s books. Kids feel that their own stories matter when they see their experiences reflected in books, and they develop curiosity and empathy when they read about experiences different from their own.

With more than 2,000 titles, Stories for All is the largest worldwide collection of diverse content curated for kids in need, with titles that not only reflect diverse cultures and ethnicity, but also different family structures, sexual orientations, individual abilities, religions, and life experiences.

First Book has partnered with publishers and funders to publish new titles and new authors, launch books previously only available in hard-cover in affordable paperback formats, and influence publisher decisions in making new, bilingual titles available at retail.

Population(s) Served
Ethnic and racial groups
Economically disadvantaged people

First Book Research & Insights drives meaningful change by aggregating and amplifying the needs, market power, and voices of those in our Network. Through First Books extensive quantitative and qualitative research, this community of educators provides insights guiding the design of programs, partnerships, and the resources we offer. Research & Insights informs how to develop products, curriculum and digital resources that will be most relevant and impactful for all serving under-resourced educators and children.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

The First Book Marketplace, a nonprofit eCommerce site, delivers a wide range of professionally curated diverse, culturally relevant books and resources -- all offered at the lowest costs possible, or for free. We use aggregated buying power to influence what is published or created to ensure we are meeting the needs of those serving children in need. Since our founding more than 30 years ago, we have distributed more than 225 million books and resources in total, with 13-16 million books distributed annually.

Population(s) Served
Teachers
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

First Book Accelerator collaborates with public and private partners, translating best-in-class expertise into actionable educational strategies to support learning for kids in need. We collaborate with field experts, publishers, corporations, foundations, fellow nonprofits, leading academics, and individual donors to address the critical needs expressed by educators. These mission-driven alliances fuel our ability to expedite resources to those who need them the most.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people
Teachers

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

By removing barriers to educational opportunities for children growing up in low-income families — and supporting the educators who serve them — we can help close the achievement gap and change the trajectory, both for individual children and for our country.

Remove Barriers to Access: Through a sustainable, market-driven model, First Book makes everything from brand new, high-quality, relevant educational resources — including books, sports equipment, winter coats, snacks, and more — deeply affordable to educators and program leaders who serve kids in need. First Book also recruits funding to provide resources to programs that have no budget for books or learning materials.

Aggregate Educators Serving Low-Income Communities: The First Book Network is made up of more than 550,000 educators who exclusively serve kids in need in a variety of settings, including classrooms, after school programs, libraries, shelters, early childhood programs, and more. Through surveys, focus groups and formal studies, we aggregate their voices to identify needs and focus investment. First Book also works in partnership with both national and regional nonprofit organizations serving children in need to supply books and resources to them.

Close the "Last Mile" of Education Innovation: First Book also expands the breadth and depth of the education field through a family of social enterprises. First Book Research & Insights is First Book's proprietary research initiative built on more than 25 years of listening to feedback from educators working in under-represented communities. The First Book Accelerator brings best-in-class research to these classrooms and programs via relevant, usable educator resources, decreasing time-to-market from years to weeks.

Increase Diversity and Promote Inclusion: Children in need are vastly underrepresented in books. First Book's Stories for All Project™ is the largest worldwide collection of diverse content curated for kids in need. To date, the collection includes more than 2,000 titles, and has launched books previously only available in hard-cover to affordable paperback formats, and partnered with publishers to make new, diverse and bilingual titles available at retail.

As a nonprofit social enterprise, First Book has built an award-winning distribution channel that delivers resources to where they are needed most. The First Book Marketplace (www.fbmarketplace.org), along with its affiliated Canada program (www.fbmpcanada.org), is a nonprofit e-Commerce platform that provides First Book's network of educators with thousands of free and very affordable high-quality, brand new books, educational resources, and basic needs items.

With thousands of items curated in direct response to educator input, the First Book Marketplace reduces the problem of price and distribution, addressing the barriers to education and attendance for kids in need from birth to age 18, including a large collection of relevant diverse and Spanish/bilingual books, school supplies, digital devices, food, clothing, and personal hygiene kits, as well as free teacher resources.

Eligible educators, librarians, providers, and others serving children in need can sign up to receive resources at www.firstbook.org/register. Registration is free and carries no obligation.

Since 1992, First Book has distributed more than 225 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families in more than 30 countries. With an additional 1,000 educators joining each month, First Book is the largest and fastest-growing network of educators in the United States exclusively serving kids in need.

Learn more in our Impact Report and thru our First Book web site. Please consider a donation to support our mission and help bring equal access to quality reading and educational resources to our kids across the US and Canada. Thank you!

Financials

First Book
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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First Book

Board of directors
as of 02/27/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Dr. Martha Molina Bernadett

Molina Foundation

Term: 2017 -

See First Book's website https://firstbook.org/about/first-book-leadership/

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/25/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability