AHM’s Here 4 You Little Libraries

As part of an ongoing effort to help residents feel more at ease talking about mental health concerns, AHM staff have created as part of its Here 4 You campaign a lending library of books on a range of mental health topics. All books have been pre-screened by staff. There will be one library donated to each town, where anyone can access books on age-appropriate topics.

These mental health resource libraries will include books such as social and emotional learning for children, coping with anxiety, getting control over anger, controlling impulsive behavior, building self-esteem, and how to speak with a child or teen about depression, anxiety, and self-harm.

Two of the primary goals of these mental health resource libraries are to help normalize for children and teens that they are not alone and that there are resources and professionals to help get through times in life when an individual’s state of mental health may feel overwhelming. Reading materials in the libraries will all be free and paid for through a Directed Local Funds grant provided to AHM from the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts. A major proponent for this grant was Senator Cathy Osten, a longtime community mental health advocate for AHM Youth and Family Services. A very special thanks to Senator Osten for her work in helping to make the Here 4 You grant project a reality.

There will be four permanently placed mental health libraries in AHM’s partner towns – Andover, Columbia, Hebron, and Marlborough. The books and guides on mental health will range from families of pre-school-age children through teens, young adults, and adults.

In Andover, the library will be placed in the rear of the Town Hall parking lot. Columbia’s, Here 4 You library will be placed at the Murphy House located at the Town Beach by the Recreation and Social Services offices. In Hebron, the Here 4 You Library will be located on the grounds of the Douglas Library. In Marlborough, the Here 4 You Library is located on the grounds of the Richmond Library.

A special thank you to all of the town leaders and their staff who recognized the importance of this community project. The ongoing AHM partnership with each of the four towns is vital for residents. For more information about AHM’s mental health services, go to www.ahmyouth.org. AHM Youth and Family Services is the youth services bureau for the towns of Andover, Columbia, Hebron, and Marlborough. AHM is an independent public charity serving these towns since 1984.