Rehabilitation consultant and author Val Walker will present an online discussion of her new book, “400 Friends and No One to Call: Breaking through Isolation and Building Community” at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, May 26, hosted by the Camden Public Library. Submitted photo

Rehabilitation consultant and author Val Walker will present an online discussion of her new book, “400 Friends and No One to Call: Breaking through Isolation and Building Community” at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, May 26, hosted by the Camden Public Library. This online program will be presented via the Zoom meeting platform. Email [email protected] to request a link to participate.

“Even before COVID-19, it took courage and initiative to break out of isolation and rebuild our support networks,” says Walker. “We may have already been strapped in isolating situations such as illness, caregiving, living alone, divorce, relocation, financial stress or the death of a loved one. This pandemic has magnified the impact of these forces. In this program, we will grapple with isolation and loneliness by exploring ways to stay close to others and deepen our bonds, despite social distancing. And further, we will learn how to build our communities and expand our networks, paving the way for our future social life.”

Originally inspired by the agonizing experience of feeling stranded and alone after the author recovered from major surgery, “400 Friends and No One to Call,” by Val Walker, spells out the how-tos for befriending a wider community, building a social safety net, and fostering a sense of belonging. Submitted photo

Originally inspired by the agonizing experience of feeling stranded and alone after the author recovered from major surgery, “400 Friends and No One to Call” spells out the how-tos for befriending a wider community, building a social safety net, and fostering a sense of belonging. On a deeper level, Walker invites us to befriend our loneliness, rather than feel ashamed of it, and open our hearts and minds to others trapped in isolation.

Val Walker is also the author of The Art of Comforting, which won the Nautilus Book Award and was recommended by the Boston Public Health Commission as a guide for families impacted by the Boston Marathon Bombing. She has a master of science degree in rehabilitation counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University and has led support groups for twenty-four years for people living with chronic illness, disability, grief, and trauma. A contributing blogger for Psychology Today, she lives in Boston and teaches and speaks throughout New England.

For more information on this online program and others offered by the Camden Public Library, visit librarycamden.org.


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