School & Community News

Free Library offers summer newspaper experience
September 7, 2016

September 2016 … Healthy NewsWorks teamed up with The Free Library of Philadelphia this summer to produce a neighborhood health newspaper at the library’s new Community Health and Literacy Center in South Philadelphia.

More than 40 children ages 8 to 13 helped create the newspaper, the Healthy Reader, over a two-week period in July. The topics in the first issue included nutrition, physical activity, and the new center.

The center opened this past spring as an outgrowth of the Free Library’s Building Inspiration: 21st Century Libraries Initiative. It also includes a Philadelphia District Health Center, a Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia clinic, and the DiSilvestro Playground and Recreation Center.

“The Free Library was thrilled to welcome Healthy NewsWorks to its annual summer program this year,” said Sara Moran, the Free Library’s vice president of strategic initiatives. “Our commitment is to offer our customers enhanced health literacy services, and Healthy NewsWorks helped us to do that for the young people that use the Library. Our thanks to the children who contributed to the Healthy Reader, and to Healthy NewsWorks for making it possible.”

Amy Deahl-Greenlaw, RDN, who serves as Healthy NewsWorks’ nutrition educator, guided students as they reviewed books, websites, and games geared to developing healthy lifestyles. Their articles appear in the newspaper along with a story written about the center by Carina Flaherty, the summer reading leader at the South Philadelphia Library. Ms. Flaherty also helped to oversee the health newspaper project.

“I was so impressed with the kids!” Ms. Deahl-Greenlaw said. “I admit I was a bit skeptical at first about how well we would be able to entice kids in the middle of summer vacation to get engaged in learning about health topics and then writing about them. But they were! They really got it—the importance of health, the significance of this unique new space dedicated to health and literacy.”

The library will distribute print copies of the Healthy Reader at the Community Health and Literacy Center.

The newspaper can also be viewed at the link below.

Free Library of Philadelphia Healthy Reader (Summer 2016)


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Since 2003, Healthy NewsWorks has been empowering elementary and middle school students to become researchers, writers, and confident communicators who advance health understanding and literacy through their factual publications and digital media.