Annapolis— In an effort to better serve children in the county who have experienced the death of a loved one, the Anne Arundel County Public
Library (AACPL) is now offering special themed book and activity kits for checkout. Called The Healing Library, these kits include picture books, art and play therapy activities and more.
“We recognize that many families don’t know where to turn when helping a child deal with a loss. These kits offer high quality experiences and materials that can support children through difficult times,” said Library CEO Skip Auld.
Each kit consists of the following:
*Curated Book Suggestions with Discussion Guides— providing page by page prompts to help relate personal experiences and guide caregivers through difficult questions
*Therapeutic Activities— consisting of holistic art and play therapy activities to assist in expression, communication and healing
*Acts of Kindness Suggestions— featuring proactive activities of community support designed to empower
*Community Helpers Research Folder— includes suggestions and
opportunities for local resources for continued help
The kits include books and activities are suitable for children ages 2-10 years old. They are held at Severn Library but can be placed on hold from the library’s catalog and are available to pick up from any branch. Customers can check out the kits for three weeks and will not incur late fines.
“Experiencing the death of a loved one and the resulting grief can feel like an isolating experience. In the process of assembling these kits, I learned about the resources Anne Arundel County has to offer families in need and the many individuals deeply committed to guiding children and families through difficult times. I hope these kits can give families a place to start and be a reminder that grief is shared, and healed, by the community,” said Severn Library Associate, Laura Namovicz.
Healing Library kits were originally created by Megan Emery and David Moorhead at the Chattanooga and Lewiston Public Libraries in collaboration with licensed social worker, Bonnie Thomas and children’s literature advocate, Kirsten Cappy.
The kits, modified for Anne Arundel County residents, were made possible with funding from the Anne Arundel County Partnership for Children, Youth and Families. They also include local resources and connections within the county to help families continue their journey after being returned.