Health and Wellness Advocates of Cherokee County recognize November Health Champion

COLUMBUS - Rural Kansas communities often struggle with extracurricular opportunities to educate and entertain children and their families. Engaging individuals can help create a sense of pride and attachment in their communities. The Columbus Public Library has created opportunities to help children and their families develop a passion for reading, expand learning, strengthen family attachment, and increase physical activity. As a result, the Health and Wellness Advocates have recognized the Columbus Public Library as the November Cherokee County Healthy Champion.

The Columbus Public Library has strived to create community partnerships, implement new programs, and improve the learning and health opportunities for the citizens of Cherokee County. In 2017, the Columbus Public Library with the assistance of local partners implemented a Story Walk program in the Columbus City Park. The StoryWalk is an early literacy program that displays the pages of a book around the park for community members to enjoy and read to their children. The program takes place March through October and has had great feedback from participants. The StoryWalk was implemented to help inspire parents and guardians to engage in a reading activity with their child while also being healthy outdoors.

The programs and initiatives of the Columbus Public Library create educational opportunities for all area citizens. In addition to the StoryWalk, the library offers a monthly book club, annual quilt show, Family Fun Nights, and a summer reading program. A grant recently received by the library will allow the library to expand their children’s educational DVD collection. Upcoming events at the library include the book club meeting on the last Tuesday of every month at 6:30 p.m., and a Christmas Story and Craft for kids at 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 19. If you have not had the opportunity to get involved, stop in to the Columbus Public Library and take advantage of the great opportunities that they have for community members.

Numerous companies, social groups, and individuals throughout the county have identified making wellness a priority for their employees, youth, and peers. Healthier lifestyles leads to long-term benefits including improved health, increased productivity, and enhanced quality of life. The Health and Wellness Advocates of Cherokee County need your help in highlighting the organizations throughout the county that are making health and wellness a priority. Please nominate a Cherokee County Health Champion by emailing or calling Christina Holmes at ChristinaHolmes@ksu.edu or 620-429-3849.

Kansas State University is committed to making its services, activities and programs accessible to all participants. If you have special requirements due to a physical, vision, or hearing disability, contact Christina Holmes, Cherokee County Extension, 124 W. Country Rd, Columbus, KS 66725, phone 620-429-3849 or email ChristinaHolmes@ksu.edu.