by Lisa Lewis
Library Services Manager
Show Low Public Library
Show Low, AZ
Our library was pleased to receive a NNLM PSR Express Outreach Award to create a Healthy Living program. Our target audience was families with young children. Our community has many young families where both parents work outside the home, children are being raised in a single parent home, or children are being raised by grandparents. Our project was to provide resources, activities, and materials to help caregivers raise these children with a healthy lifestyle. We focused on three main areas; nutrition, exercise, and emotional well-being.
Our library created programming that included Mommy & Me Fitness, Mommy & Me Music, and Mommy & Me Technology. All three of these programs targeted one of our focus areas. These classes were held weekly and each class provided NNLM resources to help these families understand the importance of healthy living. The library also formed a “Raising Healthy Kids Club” which is held monthly and was is held in a discussion format with ideas being shared by participants as well as resources being provided by guest presenters.
We also created a “Healthy Living Section” in our library with a variety of different materials available for check-out, including cookbooks, exercise resources, DVD’s, and children’s materials. Along with these items, we also made available for check-out kitchen items for parents to try at home to help make cooking healthy meals easier, such as an air-fryer, instapot, spiralizer, yogurt maker, etc. As part of this Healthy Living Section, the library held cooking demonstrations with the theme being cooking healthy meals on a budget.
Our community was very excited about these new programs and section at the library! There has definitely been interest in living healthy and by providing programs that are geared towards living healthy, we have found increased participation and a lot of positive feedback. We have received many requests to host more cooking demonstrations as well as provide even more workshops on exercise and staying active.
The NNLM resources have been well received and we hope to expand on the benefits by promoting this valuable information to all library users!