Love your library? Why not volunteer?
We offer an enjoyable and empowering experience for enthusiastic and committed people. Depending on your role you’ll either be working directly with the Warwickshire public or supporting those that do.
All core library work is carried out by staff, but volunteers take on a range of roles that help us add value to our communities, such as children’s activities, helping people use computers, discovering family histories and supporting our Home Library Service.
Could you be a library volunteer?
Our volunteers talk about their volunteering experience.
What’s in it for you
- Opportunity to meet new people;
- Learn new and enhance current skills;
- Improve your CV and future job prospects;
- Gain a sense of pride and satisfaction from helping others in your local community;
- Help to sustain our Library & Information Service.
What we offer
- a variety of flexible and regular volunteering opportunities;
- a welcoming environment and induction to the service and the role;
- training and support in the volunteer role.
What we expect from you
- to attend as agreed, and let us know when you can’t;
- to participate in the induction process and any training required for the role;
- to raise any concerns relating to your volunteer role with your named contact;
- to abide by the service’s policies and procedure, including health and safety and confidentiality.
Still not sure? Here’s what our volunteers say about their volunteering experience.
Our latest survey of volunteers revealed that:
- 91% of respondents would recommend volunteering with Warwickshire Libraries to their family & friends.
- Over half of the respondents volunteer because they enjoy working within the community.
- 55% of volunteers have been volunteering with Warwickshire Libraries for up to two years.
- Nearly 80% of respondents volunteer up to three hours at each visit.
Here’s what are our volunteers said about volunteering with us:
- “It is a fantastic opportunity to help out the local community as well as giving you personal benefits when applying for future education or employment”
- “I was offered a volunteer pack with lots of information before I started, and it gave me a deep insight into what I had to do and what to expect. It was very useful”
- “The staff at the library where I volunteer are very supportive. Particularly, in promoting the Silver Surfer service: I always have people coming to the set sessions”
Profile: Andrew Mawson – Silver Surfers Volunteer at Rugby Library
I have been the Silver Surfers Volunteer at Rugby Library for over two and a half years and I can honestly say choosing to volunteer was the best decision I ever made. The library staff are very supportive and let you get on with the role. I have also met and supported some amazing people who have had a very positive impact on my life. I came into the role as a very shy assistant who did not have a lot of self-confidence or self-belief but over time my confidence has grown and I have been able to take over the leadership of the session.
I help people with various computer problems, be it understanding how to use laptops, tablets or phones, or any queries they may have during the session. I feel this approach keeps my Silver Surfers engaged and enjoying the sessions as they are the ones setting the agenda for their learning. I never know what I will come up against each week which makes the sessions interesting to teach.
I try to be a friend to my Silver Surfers as well. I have a group of regulars who love coming each week. I encourage them to spend time talking to each other and we have built up our own little community. They also show concern for my welfare and are very supportive to me and my dreams of working in the Life Long Learning Sector one day.
Profile: Betty Addison – Older Persons Volunteer at Alcester Library
I was asked to set up a group for older persons, and so persuaded a few of my friends to join me at Alcester Library on a Monday morning. Some ideas were tossed around, until dear Maggie produced some cards and a cribbage board and offered to show us how to play. Instant success! We were hooked. Three years on we now number 20, men and women, ages ranging from 60 to 90, including two married couples, one pair having recently celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary.
My role involves setting up our meeting room with tables, chairs, and refreshments, and assisting members who use mobility aids to get to our room upstairs. I ensure that we have sufficient supplies of tea, coffee and biscuits and we celebrate birthdays with cake! There’s always an animated buzz of chatter, with frequent outbursts of shrieks, moans and laughter. It delights me to be surrounded by happy people.
What our members have said: “Very pleasant company, keeps the grey matter alert.”; “Monday morning Mathematics!”; “Lovely company and weekly get-together, Brilliant.”; “An excellent start to the week”.
I am greatly rewarded for a comparatively small effort in being a volunteer.
Roles and vacancies
Volunteers attend all of our County Council managed libraries. Volunteer roles are currently available at the following libraries:
- Alcester Library – Silver Surfer Volunteer (PDF, 69.39 KB) – Thursdays, 10:00 – 12:00.
- Atherstone Library – Silver Surfer Volunteer (PDF, 69.39 KB) – covering two sessions. Mondays, 10:00 – 11:00 & 11:00 – 12:00.
- Rugby Library – Rugby Advertiser Volunteer (PDF, 186.43 KB) – recording details of cuttings from the Rugby Advertiser; two to three hours a week.
Home Library Service
The Home Library Service, based at Kenilworth Library, is always looking for new volunteers. Apply to be a volunteer and we will contact you when a suitable post becomes available. You can commit as much or as little time as you can spare, from one day a month to a few hours a week. There are a number of ways that you can help:
- Book selection: spend a few hours in an afternoon choosing books, talking books, and jigsaws for customers;
- Visiting / driving: use one of our transit vans to visit housebound people across Warwickshire. It is not necessary to be able to drive as volunteers always go out in pairs. Some customers like to chat while others see the visit as a delivery. This role would suit someone with good communication and personal skills.
Let’s Talk volunteers
Warwickshire County Council are launching a pilot scheme of Community Hubs. We are looking for volunteers with digital skills who can help us develop these hubs. The aim of the ‘Let’s Talk’ Community Hubs is to make services more accessible to customers so that they get what they need at the earliest possible opportunity.
We are looking for volunteers at:
- Brownsover: Christ Church, CV21 1QG – 14:00 – 17:00 every Tuesday
- Studley: Village Hall, B80 7HJ – 10:00 – 12:00 every Monday
- Rugby: Benn Partnership Centre, Railway Terrace CV21 3HR – 10:00 – 12:00 every Thursday
- Atherstone: venue, day and times to be confirmed
Please see the role guide: Volunteer Role Description: Let’s Talk (PDF, 176.61 KB)
Contact us – if you have any questions or need further information.
What happens after my application is received?
We will contact you to arrange an informal interview about the role. If the role matches your skills and experience we will contact your referees. Subject to satisfactory references we will arrange a date to complete a volunteer induction and agree a start date. If the role is not a good match, we will suggest other opportunities that might be suitable for you.
Other volunteering opportunities in Warwickshire libraries
Volunteer to be a Code Club facilitator
We host Code Clubs for young people in some of our libraries. Volunteers help to run clubs using specially created resources. Find out more and search for volunteering opportunities: Code Club – find a club near you.
Volunteering at community managed libraries
There might also be volunteer opportunities at community managed libraries, which are run by local community groups with support from Warwickshire Libraries. You can contact them directly via our community managed libraries page.