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28 May 2019

Cumbria’s libraries recognised for promoting healthy living across the county

Cumbria’s libraries recognised for promoting healthy living across the county

At a presentation today Cumbria County Council’s six main libraries were recognised with ‘Healthy Library’ status for their commitment to promoting health and wellbeing with residents and communities across the county.

The Healthy Library initiative began in 2017 and is a partnership between the county council’s Public Health, Library and Community Development teams which set out to create healthy library ‘hubs’ in the county’s six districts. Their aim is to promote healthy living and support some of the most pressing health priorities for the people of Cumbria.

Visitors to the county’s main libraries in Carlisle, Penrith, Whitehaven, Workington, Kendal and Barrow are benefiting from health campaigns, events, activities and outreach projects covering breastfeeding, mental health, cancer, autism, dementia, social isolation, falls prevention and more.

Library employees have been trained in areas of health improvement like mental health first aid, dementia awareness, suicide awareness and more and are on hand to provide information and guidance on local health services and support. The Healthy Library initiative has also led to new partnerships, such as working with voluntary organisations like Age UK to support falls prevention, sloppy slipper swaps and dementia support initiatives.

Councillor Deborah Earl, Cumbria County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Community Services, said:

“Our libraries offer so many great services for people of all ages, and their locations in the heart of our communities make them perfect to promote health and wellbeing too.

“Our libraries are a source of information, support and inspiration, they are community spaces that help tackle loneliness and social isolation and they support families to give their children the very best start in life.

“I’m delighted our teams are working together to improve the services our libraries are offering and I’d encourage people who haven’t visited their local library to do so.”

In addition to the six main area libraries in Cumbria, there are a number of smaller town and rural branch libraries which are also helping to share information about health and wellbeing. 

To find your nearest library and see what’s on visit www.cumbria.gov.uk/libraries, pop along and chat to our supportive employees.

Cumbria’s libraries recognised for promoting healthy living across the county