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The Path to Healthy Aging: Partnering with Aging Councils and Agencies

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Older adults touching palms

Together, Area Agencies on Aging and Councils on Aging constitute the public infrastructure designed to support America’s older adults. As such, they are natural partners for public libraries seeking to develop programs that lead communities “on the path to healthy aging,” as the ALA Health Literacy Toolkit puts it.

Read to a Dog

Girl reading with therapy dog

Read to a Dog at Shaker Library is an ongoing opportunity for young readers to read to a certified therapy dog. The program is offered on the third Thursday of every month from 4 to 5:30 p.m. and has been running since 2010.

Libraries Help Each Other Address Food Insecurity through Programming

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Children eating lunch

In September, I had the opportunity to attend both the annual Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) and the biennial Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) conferences. For me, the major take-away from both events is that libraries can help each other develop programs that address food insecurity.

The Cooperative Extension System: Your Library’s Go-To Partner for Gardening, Nutrition, and Healthy Living Programming

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Cutting board with vegetables

The Cooperative Extension System, an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, exists to “encourage healthful lifestyles” by providing “non-formal education and learning activities to people throughout the country.” It emerged hand-in-hand with the land-grant university system and, over time, evolved from a focus on agricultural education in rural areas (4-H is part of the extension system) to a broader focus on health and food in both urban and rural parts of the country. 

Health Programs through Partnerships: A Case Study

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Woman rolling up yoga mat

New research by a San Jose State University scholar finds that most health programs offered by a major U.S. public library system are developed through community partnerships. San Jose Public Library not only works with partners to develop programs offered at the library, they also participate in regional health campaigns. Keep reading to learn how they do it, and to get inspired to try something new at your library! 

National Library Week Caption Contest

Woman behind a desk in the library

Madison Area Technical College Library hosted a caption contest in celebration of National Library Week using historical photos from the college’s archive collection. The photos, dating from the 1960s and 1970s, featured students and staff in our original campus library, complete with the era’s décor and styles.

Students were encouraged to create clever captions for the photos, with speech and thought bubbles added to each. We received 114 contest entries, and the winner was awarded a Kindle Fire HD and a $50 Amazon gift card.

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