We are always looking for volunteers for various projects at the library. If you would be interested in volunteering you may consider the information below and/or contact a staff member at the Circulation Desk.
One avenue for supporting the Sparta Public Library is through joining the Friends of the Library.
GUIDELINES FOR VOLUNTEERS
Volunteer workers are unpaid staff. They give of their time and energy to assist the library in programming or to provide specific services. Volunteers often bring to an organization a different perspective and a fresh approach.
The direct service gained by the library through a volunteer program is an important consideration. But, the library will also receive other benefits. First, community support and utilization, plus public relations are enhanced by direct volunteer involvement with library activities. Secondly, work experience is a major source of potential recruitment into the profession. Many people who begin work on volunteer projects continue their education and training for careers in the same field.
Some basic principles that are essential for the success of the Volunteer Program at the Sparta Public Library include:
- Prior planning and approval of the program by staff and the Board of Trustees.
- The same principals of management that pertain to paid staff such as planning, training, evaluation, and development also apply to volunteers.
- Planning for the use of volunteers includes clarification of their status with regard to compensation for work-related injuries, insurance coverage when operating a library vehicle, and related benefits.
- Volunteers may have work-related expenses that are paid for or reimbursed by the library. The library’s policies and procedures regarding such expenses should be explained to the volunteer before he or she begins library service.
- Volunteers should not supplant or displace established staff positions.
- Recognition and appreciation of volunteers is important. Since volunteers receive no salary, other forms of appreciation are essential.
- Volunteers should be assigned to meaningful work that utilizes their interest and talents.
- Volunteer assignments are for specific time periods to enable the library and the volunteer to review, evaluate and reassign duties.
- There should be a staff coordinator of volunteers.
- Continued orientation and training is essential for volunteers to keep them informed about procedures and policies.
- The library staff should be trained to use the volunteers and should share responsibility for the success of the volunteer program.
- Written, detailed task descriptions for volunteers are necessary.
EXAMPLES OF VOLUNTEER PROJECTS
- Preparation of picture files
- Presenting film programs
- Taking pictures or slides
- Making deliveries to homebound borrowers
- Storytelling to children
- Teaching literacy classes
- Reading discussion groups inside and outside the library
- Mending library materials
- Making publicity materials for the library
- Planning displays for the library
- Inspecting and cleaning records and audio-visual materials
- Assisting at the circulation desk
- Working with outreach programs