Thousands of children on Manitoba First Nations will have more books to read thanks to American country singer Dolly Parton.

The Imagination Library, a literacy foundation that Parton started, will help deliver books to 39 more First Nations in the province this year, bringing the total to 54.

Thousands of children up to the age of five will be eligible to receive free books in the mail each month for the next five years.

Karen Davis, who has lobbied the Imagination Library to help First Nations families in Manitoba, said there is a great need for the what the foundation offers.

"In our First Nation communities we don't have public libraries, we don't have stores that sell books, and when we do have a school, they are sorely underfunded," she said.

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library was founded in 1996 to help more children gain the reading skills they need in life.

So far, it has mailed out about 700,000 books to children in the United States and Canada.