Libraries Week is our chance to celebrate libraries and to demonstrate just how much they deliver in terms of supporting education and career development; combatting social isolation; creating stronger communities; and improving health and wellbeing.
Our Reading Well programme began in 2013 to help people to manage their mental health and well-being through self help reading. Developed in partnership with The Reading Agency as part of our Universal Health Offer, the programme now has four reading lists and has reached over 778,000 people to date.
Reading is an effective, self-help, early intervention and prevention health tool that delivers multiple health benefits, while reading groups act as a social connector, helping to combat social isolation. As such, libraries must be recognised as a key strategic partner to help deliver local and national government priorities to tackle poor mental health and improve wellbeing.
Mark Freeman, President of Libraries Connected:
'The latest evaluation of Reading Well will be released on Wednesday, World Mental Health Day. It is absolutely right that this day, which focus on improving mental health and fighting the associated stigma, comes in the middle of Libraries Week, given the power of libraries to help achieve both these goals.'