Wellness in Tough Times

 Work with your organization’s business office to learn how best to pay for these projects and have project resources delivered to communities. It was not customary practice for our procurement department to deliver resources to non-university locations.

Read for Resi l ience: Books for Young Chi ldren

Storybooks and Storybook Guides Donated to Rural Libraries The WTT project supported the purchase of books recommended by Nebraska Extension’s Read for Resilience program. The donated storybooks center on themes of resilience and coping. They can be used to support children who have or are experiencing, significant stress. The storybook guides provide information on what to expect as children respond to stressful situations and guidance on using developmentally appropriate strategies to support them. The storybook guides provide age- appropriate prompts for caregivers to engage children in conversations. There are also activities to extend learning. The storybooks and their storybook guides were donated to approximately 10 libraries in rural Nebraska. Providing learning resources to libraries contributes to our collective efforts to support families. The storybooks and storybook guides use healthy and effective ways to combat stress, and in particular, support the emotional well-being of children.

Li ttle Free Libraries for Communi ties By Brandy VanDeWalle

Children need tools to heal when coping in difficult situations. Using children’s literature is an interactive way that caregivers can help children heal. Caregivers play an important part in a child’s social-emotional skill development that can help them cope in varying situations. Nebraska Extension’s Early Childhood team identified books for the “Read for Resilience” program that support a young child’s coping and understanding of what they are feeling after a major disaster, loss, or stressor. To help children reflect on the story itself, free reading guides accompany the books, and adults can use the guides to ask questions and implement activities.

Read for Resilience books for the Little Free Libraries; photo credit: Susan Harris

The WTT team purchased 22 books along with accompanying story guides for each pilot community. Most of these children’s books were placed in a “Little Free Library,” which is a small wooden structure allowing 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week book access. Community leaders strategically placed their Little Free Libraries in an area appropriate

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