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Mental Health Awareness Month: Resources From Your Library That Can Help

This may not be the coziest topic, but it’s a necessary one. And it’s a topic that many of us deeply relate to. May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a time dedicated to promoting awareness of the importance of mental health and the symptoms caused by mental health decline. Beyond opening up educational discussions on mental health, it’s a month that aims to destigmatize common stereotypes and similar issues around it based on societal views that are misguided or not fully informed. 

Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed since 1949 and was founded by the national organization Mental Health America (MHA). Like MHA, our mission in this post is to provide a toolkit of materials from our own library that you can take advantage of to care for your own mental health needs and, just as importantly, feel accommodated for, seen, and valued. 

What are some things you can do at our library to help boost your mental health? This list isn’t comprehensive, but it’s a good starter guide: 

1. Try our Tai Chi or yoga classes - Tai Chi and yoga have been shown to improve balance, strength, mood, mental acuity, chronic pain, and other health conditions. These sessions are amazing for both your body and mind, and they’re free to attend! Tai Chi is held every Wednesday at 1pm, and yoga is on Thursdays at 7pm. Both are beginner friendly! 
2. Use one of our sensory bags - this is a good option for our neurodivergent folks who experience depression, anxiety, concentration issues, and more. Many of the tools in our sensory bags help to calm the mind and ease the body to allow one to function while completing a task. To read more in detail about the bags, visit our December 2022 blog post “Our New Sensory Bags”, where there is also an unpacking video featured from our YouTube channel! 

3. Join our Teen Activity Club - If you’re a teen or tween in need of a friendly group to call home, look no further! Whether you’re experiencing loneliness or finding it difficult to make friends, our TAC group is a place to find affirming, genuine companionship.They meet every Thursday at 4pm at our Conway branch! Need a similar group for adults? Consider becoming a member of our Book Club held on 2nd Thursdays each month, also located in Conway.  

4. Come to our monthly programs - there’s strength in finding community, and it will strengthen your mind, too. By socializing and building connections with others, you can not only make lifelong friends, but regain your sense of purpose and zest for life. You may even discover a new passion or hobby! We have so many kinds of programs to choose from each month, catered to different interests, so grab one of our calendars or click on the Events tab at to see what cool things we have going on! You can also select the Programs tab and click on your age group. 

5. Check out our selection of mental health books - We have a hefty catalog of books in our physical collection here, but if you want a more curated list, here are our staff recommendations for all ages: 

A Blue Kind of Day*

*This children’s book by Rachel Tomlinson, described as a “moving picture book about depression, sensory awareness, and the power of listening”, is not a part of our collection yet, but could be if you request it! 🙂

In addition, for those of you who don’t know, one of the digital apps we partner with is Hoopla. Similar to Libby, Hoopla is a great place to explore eBook and eAudiobook collections from the convenience of your phone or tablet. All you need to sign up is your FCL card number and PIN, and you can begin browsing the thousands of titles they offer! And the best part is, they have an entire section dedicated to improving, overcoming, and coping with mental health issues. Here’s what Hoopla has to say about Mental Health Awareness Month and how it is using its collections to give support: 

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Support your mental health through these eBook collections about managing stress and anxiety, wellness for kids and teens, finding your happy place, and authors sharing their mental health journeys:

Sometimes you need to get away, if only in your mind. Discover eBooks on @hooplaDigital that will help you find calm.

Find support for kids' and teens' mental health @hooplaDigital with eBooks created to teach and help young readers how to manage mental health.

Discover helpful tips, tricks, and insights to help with managing stress and anxiety with these eBooks available on @hooplaDigital

A valuable part of mental health is knowing you're not alone. Check out @hooplaDigital for authors who share their powerful stories of struggle and how they cope.

Download the Hoopla app from our website here: