Do you have some time? Would you be willing to share your time at or for our public libraries?
Libraries depend on volunteers to help us accomplish all sorts of different things! We know that not all volunteers are alike so we do our best to match your skills, interests, and availability with the jobs we have. We can accommodate snowbirds and vacationers, those with tech skills and those without, those who like a regular schedule and those who want intermittent only.
Who are our volunteers?
Our board members are volunteers who guide us, set policy, oversee budgets, and ensure appropriate legal, financial, and personnel procedures. They commit to attending board meetings, serving on board committees, and staying current on the needs in our communities and on issues in the greater library world. Each board member brings something different to their board, an area of expertise, a connection in the community, a passion for the role of libraries in the 21st century.
Our Friends are volunteers who support libraries in many different ways. Most of our Friends groups help by organizing and running fundraising events. Some Friends groups help by organizing programs for the library, such as author events or special interest programs. Some take on special projects such as gardening and beautification of the library building and grounds. All of our Friends make great advocates, helping us tell the story of libraries in the 21st century.
At-the-library volunteers help us with day-to-day tasks. Most volunteers commit to a certain day of the week and somewhere between 2 and 5 hours that day so the volunteers can mark their calendar and the library can manage all the different volunteers. It’s not helpful to have too many volunteers on one day and none on another! Some volunteers take a task and come in when it’s convenient for them.
What are some of the day-to-day tasks?
Working at the circulation desk to check items in and out.
Shelving items that have been returned and “reading” the shelves to keep things in proper order.
Searching for lost or missing items before overdue notices are sent out.
Making phone calls to borrowers about arrived holds, overdue items, and other notifications.
Preparing materials for children’s, teen, and adult programs. At some libraries, volunteers also lead the programs.
Managing ongoing used book sales, sorting through donations and arranging displays.
Teaching computer classes for different ages and abilities.
Delivering library items to homebound readers, nursing homes, and other places.
We know there are other tasks that volunteers could probably help with that we haven’t even explored yet! If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, give your local library a call. We have applications for board members, we have contact information for Friends groups, and for weekly tasks we’ll take a little time to talk with you to see where you’d fit best. We’d love to hear from you!
Molly Rodgers is Administrator of the Wayne Library Alliance. Visit on-line at or call your local library for information: Hawley 570-226-4620; Newfoundland 570-676-4518; Hamlin 570-689-0903; Honesdale 570-253-1220; Bethany 570-253-4349; Pleasant Mount 570-448-2573; Lakewood 570-798-2444.