How many ways can you define health?

What does health mean to you? Does it mean the condition of your physical body? Your mental state? Your social relationships? Your career? Your finances? Your environment? All of the above?

As Community Health Librarian of Practice, I define health as public. I take a universal view of health and look at the overall health of individuals in relation to the community in which they live and interact with others. My goal is to empower individuals to take charge of their health destiny, however they define it. Our most basic health involves our body. When we feel good, we think we can do anything! Yet we only have one body, and its condition over time can influence our quality of life. Many variables impact our physical and mental health including some we never consider, such as our moods, our education, and even the environments in which we live. I want to encourage us to find our best selves; for us, for our families, and for our society. If we feel good, it is easier to do good and care about others.

On a broader, community-wide level, I define health as partnerships. I partner with community groups whose aim it is to improve the overall quality of life in Evansville. I am also reaching out to the general public in non-traditional ways and in settings where the ultimate goal is increasing the public’s access to valuable health information. From farmers’ markets, barber shops, employer health fairs, and more, the library provides outreach, programming, and interactive engagement with today’s audience.

To consider health within the realm of the public library is unique. For years we have provided access to quality, trustworthy information that can help make sense of the facets that form your total health picture. But these new ways of sharing and collaborating in an interdisciplinary fashion will build on our community’s strengths, and foster well-being for generations to come. Let your public library be your partner in achieving your own personal best, as well as helping you give back to the community and helping others reach their personal best. Good health is infectious!

So, now, how do you define health?

Helen Azarian
Librarian of Practice

Helen Azarian

Give her a crossword puzzle to work, and Helen is one happy camper. She also enjoys making recipes healthier, developing her green thumb, and tracking her daily steps on walks with her husband.

Community Inquiry