January 2023 Newsletter


The January 2023 newsletter of Let’s Move in Libraries includes:

  • An invitation to join us for a virtual conversation on food security and libraries
  • An exciting new resource: Catch.org
  • Inspiring stories from Rhode Island and Ohio
  • Opportunities to learn about outdoor learning
  • A funding opportunity from the ALA

This month’s featured image comes from North Carolina.

We want to think Amy Clement, Library Assistant, Chatham Community Library, Pittsboro, North Carolina, for sharing the following inspiring story and photograph.

Share your story to be featured in a future newsletter, and on our website, to inspire others and to shine a light on the amazing work you’re doing in your community!

Amy writes, “I’m happy to report that Healthy Living at the Library is a valuable resource for library staff in Chatham County, and the ongoing inspiration found in the Let’s Move in Libraries newsletter is much appreciated!

Our Blood Pressure Kit lending program began at the end of October. After Rita Van Duinen, Manager of the Chatham Community Library, saw this article – AHA NYC and Queens Public Library start lending blood pressure monitoring kits at Far Rockaway Library – we contacted the Triangle division of the American Heart Association to propose a partnership.  Their Community Impact Director, Liliana Marin, met with us virtually to discuss our interest and to share background on other projects they’ve been involved with.

We settled on a borrowing program for blood pressure cuffs and accompanying kits, and each of our three library branches has two kits to loan.  Kits contain the device, instructions, and related documentation on high blood pressure/hypertension, all contained in a sealed plastic box.  Printed materials are bilingual, and they are laminated for circulation.  Kits are reservable, check out for six weeks, and are renewable if there aren’t other hold requests.

For the month of November, a display showcasing the kits has had pride of place near the main Circulation Desk (this month’s featured photo).  It announces the availability of kits at the library, offers handouts from AHA about small lifestyle interventions with big impact, highlights new acquisitions related to managing high blood pressure, and includes books/DVDs/music CDs from the collection, along with information about accessing online databases for health information.

Providing blood pressure kits supports the library’s mission to Connect, Learn, and Grow, and we continue to look for ways to help our community do just that. These efforts directly relate to health indicators in the recently published 2021 Chatham County Community Assessment.”

An invitation to join us for a virtual conversation on food security and libraries

Join us online January 24, 2023, for an inspiring and informative conversation on What role should public libraries play in addressing food insecurity? In what ways can public libraries address food insecurity in their communities?

The focus of this webinar is a recent study conducted in Illinois that helps answer the above questions. Webinar participants will discover how public library staff perceive the role of the library in addressing food insecurity during COVID-19. In addition, an abundance of examples will be provided on how you can help your library address food insecurity in your community. Webinar participants are encouraged to share their own ideas and examples.

The speaker (pictured here) is Miriam Rosen (she/her). She has worked in school and public libraries since 2004. She recently earned a Ph.D. in Information Studies from Dominican University in River Forest, IL, with a dissertation that explored food insecurity in public libraries in Illinois during the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently she works as a school librarian at Evanston Township High School in Evanston, IL. She is passionate about public libraries and their ever-changing role in serving community needs.

An exciting new resource: Catch.org

We recently met with Bryan Austin, Community Consultant for the CATCH Global Foundation. Bryan works to maintain our partnerships with the programs and communities that use CATCH.

Catch.org has an amazing array of resources, many of which are completely free, that librarians can use to help promote community health!

CATCH stands for a Coordinated Approach To Community Health. More than 15,000 schools and child care sites use CATCH’s evidence-based Whole Child wellness programs, reaching over 3 million PreK-12 students annually.

We want to highlight the following free resources:

Educators Club – Sign up to receive free resources, access to our “Dance of the Month,” and a chance to connect with like-minded educators on a range of health and wellness topics.

What is Whole Child Wellness? – An evidence-based primer to this critical topic.

Community Spotlights – Examples of the CATCH approach in action.

We invite you to explore the Catch.org website, join their educators club, and take advantage of this evidence-based resource to support whole child wellness at your library!

Is there a resource like this one that you turn to regularly? Let us know and we’ll share it out!

Inspiring stories from Rhode Island and Ohio

We want to thank Kyera Shea and Cynthia Hirtzel for sharing the following inspiring stories! We’re always looking to shine a spotlight on libraries doing great things to support community health! What you you been up to? Let us know to inspire others!

Kyera Shea writes “the East Smithfield Public Library [Rhode Island] does a ‘Walk and Talk Book Chat’ program every Thursday morning at 10 am. We meet at different outdoor locations in town, like parks and just encourage people to get outside for a little during the day. We meet even during the winter because it’s still important to get fresh air and some sun on your face, even if it’s cold outside.” Learn more on the library’s Facebook page.

Cynthia Hirtzel of Ohio’s Hubbard Public Library writes “Hubbard Public Library’s new Permanent StoryWalk, and accompanying Outdoor Musical Instruments (3 Sunflower Petal Drums) and Sensory Path, are now open!

All details are available in the “Program Model” on this new outdoors resource just published on the American Library Association’s (ALA) ‘Programming Librarian’ website! ALA was one of the funders and supporters of this new program (as were several foundations and other funders) through one of its grant programs!

Here is the link to the article on the Programming Librarian website, which includes some great photos.”

This StoryWalk is part of the library’s “Beyond Library Walls / Library Beyond Walls – Bringing HPL Outdoors” initiative.

Opportunities to learn about outdoor learning

Outdoor Learning Store LogoThe Outdoor Learning Virtual Workshop Seasonal Series is available for free this Spring, thanks to a partnership between The Outdoor Learning Store, Take Me Outside, and other outdoor learning partners!

We’re thrilled to share this opportunity with public librarians interested in promoting outdoor learning. Sign up here.

Registration is free, and there will be plenty of draw prizes for attendees!

Workshops are 60 minutes and will take place at 4pm Pacific / 7pm Eastern.

For those who can’t attend live these will each be recorded and posted on the Recordings Page

Learn more and sign up at The Outdoor Learning Store.

A funding opportunity from the ALA

Peggy Barber Tribute GrantThe American Library Association (ALA) invites library workers to apply for the third annual Peggy Barber Tribute Grant, a programming grant named after the transformative ALA leader responsible for the creation of National Library Week and the Celebrity READ series.

Each year, the grant will focus on supporting a specific type of library programming. For the 2022–2023 cycle, libraries are invited to submit applications for a grant to support programming related to increasing access for groups that are identified as undeserved or new library users in the community.

Some example proposals could include increasing access to library resources by creating StoryWalk installations in underserved areas of your community, or working with underserved community groups to develop new health programming.

The Peggy Barber Tribute Grant is an annual grant that recognizes, promotes and supports meaningful programs in libraries that have limited and/or no access to budgetary support for programming. This grant aims to help ease budget challenges by annually awarding three libraries $2,500 to support a proposed program, program series or programming effort.

Applications for the award will be accepted from until February 1, 2023. Read the grant guidelines and apply online.

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 Subscribe to the Let’s Move in Libraries newsletter for monthly editions of success stories, educational opportunities, and food for thought that will deepen the impact of HEAL (Healthy Eating & Active Living) programs and services in public libraries. Also follow the project on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter to stay up-to-date. The Let’s Move in Libraries project focuses on how public libraries create opportunities for individuals of all ages and abilities to engage in healthy activities.

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