TPL Children’s Department looking for Teen Volunteers for Summer 2022!
What kinds of things could I volunteer to do at the library?
Programming (must be age 13+ by June 1, 2022 to apply)
- Hands-on program assistance (including but not limited to: greeting registrants and making nametags; creating sample crafts; setting up; cleaning up; assisting participants; these volunteers will need to be able to commit to specific program schedules)
- Kit assembly (including but not limited to: working independently onsite; assembling supply kits for programs and Grab&Go projects)
- Reading Club (including but not limited to: helping children and their caregivers register for and participate in both versions of our hybrid reading club; helping participants navigate the steps of participation along the way; handing out prizes and raffle tickets)
Library Maintenance (must be age 15+ by June 1, 2022 to apply)
- Shelving (including but not limited to: keeping the collection in EXACT numerical and alphabetical order; dusting and cleaning shelves; shifting books; pulling items for display or reserve requests)
Teen Summer Volunteer FAQs
- Show up on time for all shifts to which you have committed.
- Contact us ASAP if you will be late or absent. If you are giving at least 48-hours’ notice, this can be done by emailing the Volunteer Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 610.688.7092 x214. If your absence is due to a last-minute emergency or illness and you are NOT able to give at least 48 hours’ notice, you MUST call the Children’s Desk (610.688.7092 x210) and leave a message if you get the voicemail. This will be checked every day that we are open and regardless of the Volunteer Coordinator’s schedule.
- Dress comfortably but appropriately. If you are allowed to wear it to school you are allowed to wear it in the library.
- Leave your phone and other electronic devices in your pocket or bag during your volunteer shift. EXCEPTION: ear buds or headphones may be worn by Shelving Volunteers working in the stacks.
- Real-world work experience. Throughout the recruitment, training, and supervising experiences, volunteers practice keeping to a schedule, meeting goals and deadlines, and interacting with a variety of people. We expect a lot from our volunteers because we know they are capable of doing great things!
- Something with which to impress college recruiters. A commitment to volunteering is something that admissions officers look for on college applications.
- Earning service hours. The library is a great place to work on your hours for NHS, scouts, your house of worship, etc.
- Familiarity with how a library works.
- A pleasant and friendly atmosphere. We value our volunteers and try to match each with the ideal tasks for their personality, experience, interests, and schedules.
- Insider access to new books and media added to the collection.
All of our volunteer jobs require training and supervision by staff members, and in some cases the training can be extensive. Time spent training and supervising volunteers is an investment in them, so we realize its value, but it’s also time that cannot be spent on other necessary library tasks. We feel that the outcome should be worth the investment on both sides: ours and yours.
We have only so many positions to offer. If you are enthusiastic about joining us and your schedule and interests fit our needs, we are happy to include you. However, if they do not we may not be able to find a place for you this summer.
Our programs are for ages up to 12/rising 7th-graders. If you are within that range, we want you to experience our summer programs as a participant! It works out better for all if volunteers are at least one grade-level above our oldest participants. When it comes to shelving, there are mistakes made that could have serious consequences for the library or our patrons. Because of the heightened responsibility of keeping our collection in exact order, anyone performing those tasks should have a little more maturity and judgement. Because we don’t know every potential volunteer personally, we have to use age as a parameter.
Yes! At the end of the summer, a certificate with your total volunteer hours will be available, along with a thank-you voucher for free books from our book store. We keep volunteer statistics for one calendar year only, so you will need to keep your certificate as proof beyond that. If you need the Volunteer Coordinator to sign a separate letter or form for a specific organization, that can be done upon request.
We count on our volunteers to be available when scheduled, and it is a hardship on the staff and other volunteers when someone is unexpectedly absent. If you have a conflict of which you were not previously aware that will prevent you from keeping your commitment for the span of several days or weeks, such as a newly-scheduled vacation or camp, we may have to reevaluate your volunteer status. If you don’t have a schedule conflict but discover that the position to which you were assigned isn’t a good fit, it may be possible to switch tasks if we can get your previous position filled by another volunteer.