About The Program

Bluff City Baby is a gift for new parents that has been designed to encourage early literacy activities. It will be years before your baby begins to read independently, but engaging in nurturing Touch, Talk Read and Play on a daily basis lays the foundation for your child’s future language skills and healthy social-emotional development.

Launched in 2020 by the Urban Child Institute as a pilot program at Methodist South Hospital, “Bluff City Baby” is an initiative of Read901, Memphis’ community-wide literacy campaign.

Get Involved

The 2020 pilot program at Methodist South Hospital is being managed by staff at the Urban Child Institute. As the program grows, volunteers will be needed to fill backpacks with items. Please check back for updates. In the meantime, click here to find other literacy-related volunteer opportunities in Memphis.

Parent Resources

New Parents! Text4baby is a free service that sends personalized messages directly to you. The texts have information you can trust because they are developed by experts from all over the country. There is also an app that provides additional information about your baby’s development, childcare tips and more. Click here for more information.


Additional Resources

Ready4K: an evidence-based family engagement curriculum delivered via text messages.

Books From Birth: a program providing early literacy resources to children from birth to age five. 


Interested in finding out more or becoming a partner to help scale up and sustain Bluff City Baby? 

Contact Anasa Franklin at afranklin [at] literacymidsouth [dot] org or 901-327-6000.

Like and Follow us on Facebook or Instagram!

We were the people who were not in the papers. 

We lived in the blank white spaces at the edges of print. It gave us more freedom. 

We lived in the gaps between the stories.

Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale