Looking after your lungs

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month and Monmouthshire Libraries have information to promote a healthy lifestyle and booklets about coping with lung cancer.

Macmillan Cancer Support is working in partnership with Monmouthshire Libraries to develop a good quality information service for people affected by cancer, their friends, family and anyone worried about the risk of cancer.

Come along to Abergavenny Library on Tuesday 22nd November from 2pm until 4.30pm to meet the Macmillan Information Coordinator and chat about the books and leaflets on wellbeing available in the library.

We are also staging another information ‘drop in’ session at Caldicot Library on Wednesday 23rd November from 2pm-4.30pm.

For further information please call 01873 735980 or email macmillan@monmouthshire.gov.uk.

Multi-Sensory Story Telling

On 9th May library staff received free training in multi-sensory story telling from the Bag Books Organisation.  Bag Books is dedicated to making stories accessible to children and adults with severe sensory deprivation and Special Educational Needs. 

Expert trainer Bernard Tagliavini (pictured) did three sessions with children from the Overmonnow Special Education Unit followed by a participative training session for staff. “It was very helpful”, commented David Fraser from Abergavenny Library.  The techniques are useful for dealing with groups of children where there are mixed abilities.

Neil Ansell at Abergavenny Library

Neil Ansell at Abergavenny Library

Neil Ansell, traveller, award winning journalist, undercover investigator and film maker spoke about his first book, Deep Country at Abergavenny Library on 6th May to an audience of forty-five appreciative listeners. The book describes his experience of living on a remote hillside in Wales for five years.

He writes “ my book, Deep Country, is an account of the five years I spent in the hills, of how I lived and what I lived for, of how I learned to become self-sufficient in every sense of the word. Not just in terms of growing or gathering almost all of my supply of food, but in terms of relying entirely on my own resources. I was never bored; there was always too much to be done; chopping wood, fetching water, foraging, weeding, walking and watching. This is a book about nature and landscape, but it is also a book about what it means to live a life so remote that you may not see another soul for weeks at a time. No neighbours, no vehicles, no phone. It was possible to walk west from the cottage for 20 miles without coming to another house or a road.” 

This was the first promotional event in Wales of a work which is set to become a classic in the literature of rural Wales.  It has already promoted a great deal of discussion and reignited interest in other books about the Welsh rural experience.

MacMillan Cancer Support

We have been successful in obtaining grant funding to provide a dedicated Cancer Support and Information Coordinator. Funded for three years, the post holder will work across the county in libraries, the prison and other venues to offer support to people affected by cancer, their carers and families.  He or she will be based in Abergavenny Library and will conduct private interviews, hold meetings and organise therapeutic reading and other groups in all of the county’s libraries.  He/she will also build a database of useful information and train library staff in dealing with health related enquiries.  This post has been warmly welcomed by local residents who have been affected by cancer as they know from personal experience how much difference this kind of service could make to fellow sufferers.