In an earlier post, we talked about the challenges that can come with having volunteers in the library. The benefits of having volunteers, however, can be far greater than the obvious labor they provide. Sometimes having a volunteer program in a library is about much more than getting tangible aid.
Posts Tagged ‘volunteers’
Volunteering during the summer doesn’t have to be all about the summer reading programs or getting all of the library’s books in perfect alphabetical order. At the Arlington Heights Memorial Library in Illinois, teens and staff alike get to show off a variety of skills in the Summer Volunteer Squad program. The Summer Volunteer Squad was created to give the library’s many teen volunteers the opportunity to volunteer meaningfully during their summer breaks. The program was modeled after a similar program at the nearby Oak Park (IL) Library.
Incorporate Seasonal Employees and Volunteers for Efficient Library Staffing
Since 2010, spending cuts have drastically affected public libraries in the United Kingdom, particularly in England. A BBC investigation discovered a startling trend: In the past six years, almost eight thousand paid staff have lost their jobs, which amounts to 25 percent of the total working force. In that same time period, over 340 libraries have closed, with at least another hundred slotted to close in the next year. Additionally, over 170 libraries have been “transferred to community groups,” which means that they are solely run by volunteers. The use of volunteers is the only number that has increased (by fifteen thousand) since 2010. Is this trend signifying the end of UK public libraries?
Volunteer coordinators are part human resources director and part public staff, and many are patrons’ first introduction to a deeper appreciation of how the library works.
The Colorado Springs Mini Maker Faire was held on October 18, 2014, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. With over 6,000 people in attendance, it was a great way to introduce people to a new library, its makerspaces, and the maker culture as a whole. Plans are currently in progress for the second annual faire.
Are your patrons demanding more computer classes or are they asking for different technology topics? With budgets shrinking and staff members busier than ever, recruiting volunteers to teach computer and technology classes can help fill this need.