North Yorkshire libraries have been awarded £10,000 to take part in a national initiative to combat loneliness and promote wellbeing through the power of reading.
The Reading Agency is running the Read, Talk, Share campaign, enabled by £3.5m funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport.
As well as expanding the Reading Well health and wellbeing book collections for all ages in libraries across North Yorkshire, the funding will also help with establishing two new Reading Friends groups as pilots for the authority.
There will be a telephone-based group aimed at isolated older people and their carers, and a virtual group aimed at bringing together teenagers and young volunteers to get involved in their local library and share their love of reading.
County Councillor Greg White, Executive Member for Libraries, said: “We are extremely grateful to receive this funding from The Reading Agency. Tackling loneliness and mental health issues across the county has always been a priority for us and libraries are a key player in this.
“The past year has demonstrated that libraries are needed more than ever and this funding means that we are able to expand our offering and encourage more people to use their local library.”
Read more information on what the library service is offering during the pandemic.