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Tuesday, 16 October 2012 13:47

Chris Corcoran - Take a fresh look at your library

Relaxation, entertainment and information in one space... take a fresh look at your library

Welsh libraries are encouraging everyone to take a fresh look at their library this autumn as they take part in a national campaign to promote the benefits library usage can have on people's health and wellbeing.

From mood-boosting books and group activities to large print and audio books, libraries will be showing how they can have a positive impact on your life during the 'Get Reading, Get Better, Get Libraries' campaign.

Comedian and broadcaster, Chris Corcoran is attending an event in Merthyr Central Library on 18th October to promote the campaign, he said: "I'm delighted to be part of the "Get Reading, Get Better, Get Libraries" campaign; libraries are an often overlooked resource which young people should really get into. Whether you are facing a difficult time at home or in school, need internet access or information for a project or if you want to get your hands on a stash of graphic novels or e-books, the library is a great place to find all this and best of all it's free! So I'd urge you and your mates to take a fresh look at your library this autumn and see what they have to offer."

A full programme of free events for all the family in libraries and local communities across the whole of Wales is available to view on librarywales.org - ranging from regular library events such as author visits, baby bounce and rhyme sessions and reading groups through to yoga, laughter therapy, zumba classes and drop-in health checks.

Huw Lewis, Housing, Regeneration and Heritage Minister said, "Libraries are crucial to our health and wellbeing providing us with a vast choice of things to read, watch or listen to, as well as activities and special events. Being 'prescribed' a book by your GP or health worker may not be what you were expecting, but research has shown that the Book Prescription Wales scheme is a great success for helping those suffering from mild to moderate mental health issues. Specially chosen books can help people take charge of their health.

"During the month long 'Get Libraries' festival people should pop into their local library and discover ways that libraries can help with their health and wellbeing."

Book Prescription Wales enables GPs and other health professionals to prescribe self-help books which can help people suffering from mild to moderate mental health issues to access information to better manage their conditions. Over 30 titles have been carefully selected and are available to be borrowed free of charge at every local library across Wales.

"After retiring 2 years ago I felt a little lonely so I joined the computer class and I love coming here to meet my friends and also learn new things. I am not afraid of the computer anymore and will try new things on the computer. I also spend a happy time looking through the books and it has started me back reading." Library User, Merthyr Tydfil

"Ill health has suspended my working life. The library