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New mental health initiative will provide New Brunswickers access to therapeutic and self-help books

(Moncton) July 31, 2018 - Today, Horizon Health Network (Horizon) launched a new mental health initiative that will help New Brunswickers by providing them with access to therapeutic and self-help books on topics of mental health, addictions and life challenges.

The Healing Books Project is a bibliotherapy program founded by a Horizon client with lived experience and supported by Horizon's Addictions and Mental Health team. She was inspired to create the project because of the support and hope she found in reading self-help and therapeutic books while in treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

"We are so proud to deliver an initiative that will serve New Brunswick residents and caregivers who are looking for information about depression, anxiety, and stress and/or other mental health or addictions challenges," said Jean Daigle, VP Community, Horizon. "Working with our patients, clients, families and communities to create and sustain quality and safe care is Horizon's top priority, and this project illustrates how working with clients who use the health care system can improve the health care system."

The program has been delivered in collaboration with the New Brunswick Public Library Service (NBPLS) and with the support of MindCare New Brunswick (MindCare NB).

The Healing Books Project consists of more than 1,300 books. Titles touch on 35 different mental health topics for children, adolescents, and adults. The collection also has resources for supporters of people who face mental health and addictions challenges.

All New Brunswick residents with an N.B. Public Libraries card will have access, at no cost, to English and French books, eBooks, and audiobooks, as well as resources for those with print disabilities.

Books in the Healing Books Project are identifiable by a butterfly icon, which appears on the item's online catalogue record, as well as on a bookplate inside books. Books are also part of a space within the NBPLS online catalogue called the Mental Health "room."

Books will be available to borrow through all 63 public libraries in the province and through the New Brunswick Public Libraries provincial online catalogue. Books will also be available through Library Services by Mail.

"Your government strongly supports efforts made to help improve access to mental health services in New Brunswick," said Finance Minister and Minister responsible for Literacy Cathy Rogers. "The Healing Books project is a very positive step in helping ensure people have access to materials and information about various topics related to mental health."

The creation of the project has been made possible thanks to a $25,000 grant from MindCare NB, a committee of the Board of Directors within the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation (SJRHF) that funds programs across the province that promote mental wellness and provide services to those living with mental illness. The grant was used for the purchase of print books in the Healing Books Project collection.

"MindCare NB is very proud to have supported the Healing Books Project," said Jeff McAloon, President and CEO, SJRHF and MindCare NB. "Supporting New Brunswickers who are dealing with mental health and addiction issues is our core mandate."

Ebooks and audiobooks in the project were purchased through other means, including support from the New Brunswick Public Libraries Foundation.

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For more information contact:

Stephanie Neilson
Media Relations, Horizon

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