Initiated and sponsored by best-selling author Ann Cleeves, six North East local authorities have been trialling Community Reading Workers based in a range of different community settings introducing participants to the power of reading for pleasure to improve health and wellbeing and tackle health inequalities.
VONNE have supported this regional pilot project bringing together partnerships involving public health, libraries, the VCSE and North East & North Cumbria ICB Healthy Communities & Social Prescribing leads, has seen a range of different delivery approaches targeting our most disadvantaged areas and communities. Nine Community Reading workers working across six Local Authorities have been recruited with a further six Local Authority areas looking to develop the model.
Reading for Wellbeing has helped people of all ages across different communities to:
- Make connections between people, tackling social isolation and loneliness.
- Have a sense of purpose – attending an activity gives participants routine and structure.
- Escape from day-to-day worries, supporting improved mental health.
"Reading for Wellbeing works because everyone involved - those working in public health, libraries, and the voluntary sector - has been flexible, passionate and committed. It helps that organisations in the North East are brilliant at partnership working. I'm so proud to be a part of it." Ann Cleeves
Meet the people involved and find out what the project means to them...
The project team is keen to work with local partners to grow Reading for Wellbeing in a way that adapts to local needs and helps reach those people who will benefit most, such as those experiencing ill health, loneliness or are perhaps least likely to be accessing mainstream library services or groups.
If you think your local community would benefit from Reading for Wellbeing and want to know more about the model, Community Reading Workers, training options or to discuss setting up a local partnership visit their website to get in touch.
The Integrated Care System (ICS) explained
VCSE Partnership Programme
VCSE Research Partnerships
Healthy Communities and Social Prescribing
- About the North East and North Cumbria Healthy Communities and Social Prescribing programme.
- Our Health Champions project.
Reading for Wellbeing