19th Oct, 2018

Reading Den opened at Chelmsley Wood library to support children's mental health

Sarah Mason 15th May, 2018

A NEW range of books to support children’s mental health and wellbeing have been placed into Chelmsley Wood library.

The Reading Den, which opened on Monday (May 14) provides specialist books, stories and resources to promote mental health wellbeing for parents, carers and children across Solihull.

It has been designed with the particular needs of fostered and adopted children and young people in mind.

Daniela Visram, a local foster carer, explains: “I’m really excited about the Reading Den. I read every night to the boys as it’s a perfect opportunity to build bonds, repair relationships and end the day on a positive note.”

The Den is crammed full of titles, stories, audio books and DVDs specially chosen for their qualities in engaging primary school age children to talk more openly about emotions and feelings.

The Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Stuart Davis, formally opened the Reading Den on the first day of Mental Health Awareness Week and Foster Care Fortnight.

The opening featured an inclusive creative poetry session and a special storytelling for local pre-school children.

Councillor Ken Meeson, cabinet member for children, education and skills said: “The Reading Den will be a wonderful resource for children, parents and carers alike.

“It’s really important that children feel able to talk about their emotions and hopefully the books and stories will help them to do just that.”

The Den is a partnership between the Solihull Council Library Service and Solar, the emotional wellbeing and mental health service for children and young people in Solihull, which is provided by Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (BSMHFT) in partnership with Barnardo’s and Autism West Midlands.

BSMHFT Chief Executive John Short said: “We know reading and storytelling can help children gain confidence in talking about their thoughts, feelings and experiences.

“These handpicked stories are designed to make it easier for parents and carers to open up those healthy conversations with children and are a helpful resource for any family in Solihull.”

To see the whole range of books visit www.solihull.gov.uk/Resident/Libraries/chelmsleywoodreadingden

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