In recognition of the critical need for free, reliable health information in Oklahoma, the national non-profit organization Libraries for the Future (LFF) has awarded the Pioneer Library System a grant of $12,000.

The grant will allow for a full year of “Fit for Life” programming to address physical and brain health across the lifespan, in nine branches throughout Cleveland, McClain and Pottawatomie counties.


NORMAN—In recognition of the critical need for free, reliable health information in Oklahoma, the national non-profit organization Libraries for the Future (LFF) has awarded the Pioneer Library System a grant of $12,000.
The grant will allow for a full year of “Fit for Life” programming to address physical and brain health across the lifespan, in nine branches throughout Cleveland, McClain and Pottawatomie counties.
The Pioneer Library System is one of 17 across the nation to receive “Fit for Life” grants, made possible by the generous support of MetLife Foundation and overseen by Libraries for the Future (LFF).
Pioneer Library System applied for the competitive grant to promote lifelong health and wellness throughout its three county areas. “Fit for Life” will emphasize physical health and the new field of “brain health,” using five pillars of brain health that have emerged from the latest scientific research: diet, physical exercise, intellectual challenge, mental stimulation through new experiences and socialization.
“We are delighted to participate in this cutting-edge program,” said Director Anne Masters. “Libraries have always been about healthy minds. But now, by strengthening the library’s health resources and programming, we can promote healthy lifestyles in our Pioneer communities. We can’t wait to show people how much more active they — and the library —  can be!”
 LFF requires each participating library to partner with community organizations to expand possibilities for community outreach and activities. Pioneer has partnered with the Cleveland County Healthy Community Coalition and many of its partners, including Norman and Moore Regional Hospitals, the United Way’s Success by Six, and the Cleveland County YMCA. Other partners include the State Department of Health, Oklahoma Academy of State Goals and INTEGRIS Health and other regional hospitals.
As part of its program, the Pioneer Library System will launch a community-wide public awareness campaign to promote the importance of fitness and nutrition for all ages. The nine participating branches will offer health programming for young children, teens and seniors, distribute free health publications and highlight library resources about health and wellness.
The Pioneer Library System will build a Fit for Life Web page as part of its brain health program. In addition, the national Fit for Life Web site (www.fitforlifelibraries.org ) will offer detailed information on each program component, as well as activities for library participants and all Web users, as the program gets under way in 2009.
This year, Pioneer Library System celebrates 50 years of providing quality library service to the citizens of Cleveland, McClain and Pottawatomie counties through nine hometown branch libraries. For more information, visit www.justsoyouknow.us .