Volunteers and Friends

The Library Board encourages individuals and groups to volunteer their time and efforts in the service of the Mercer Public Library. In appreciation of volunteer services, the library acknowledges the need to organize volunteer activities and provide the appropriate recognition befitting the benefit to the library and the communities it serves.

Annual recognition will be given based on the number of years of service. This will include a listing of volunteer names in a newspaper release, a certificate of appreciation, and the addition of a book to the collection in each volunteer’s name.

A library friends group is a formal association of people who unite to plan and execute, in conjunction with library goals and the needs of the Library Director, programs and events to benefit the library. A friends group is heavily involved in fund-raising for the library and oversees periodic book sales. Friends groups always serve at the pleasure of the Library Board, which is the only body with legal authority to set policy for the development of the library.

Typical Responsibilities of Volunteers

Under immediate supervision, volunteers re-shelve library materials, maintain materials in the library collection in a neat and orderly fashion, and assist in other support tasks as assigned.

1. Perform alpha-numeric sorting and filing tasks.
2. Arrange returned materials and reshelve them in proper order.
3. Perform shelf-reading and straighten materials on the shelves.
4. Empty the bookdrop and take returned items to the proper place for check in.
5. Refer non-directional questions to appropriate staff member(s).
6. Prepare, repair, or recondition library materials.
7. Assist with library patrons, programs, and displays.
8. Assist patrons with mechanical operation of library equipment.
9. Perform light housekeeping.
10. Perform other related work.

Knowledge and Abilities:
1. Communicate effectively with staff and public.
2. Follow detailed directions.
3. Sort efficiently in alphabetic or numeric order.
4. Understand and perform assigned library procedures.
5. Maintain and foster cooperative and courteous working relationship with the public, peers and supervisors.
6. Knowledge and use of good English grammar and spelling.
7. Apply technical knowledge.
8. Comprehend and follow instructions from supervisor, verbally and in written form.
9. Effectively communicate ideas and information contained in both written and verbal form.
10. Calculate basic arithmetic problems (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) without the aid of a calculator.
11. Effectively read and understand information contained in memoranda, bulletins, etc.

Physical demands:
1. Ability to work in confined spaces.
2. Bending, twisting, reaching and feeling.
3. Climbing, ascending and descending short footstool.
4. Handling, picking up and shelving books.
5. Light lifting and carrying.
6. Standing, walking, stooping, kneeling and crouching.
7. Talking, hearing, near vision, and use of telephone.

All volunteers will be required annually to sign the Mercer Public Library Volunteer Agreement (see Appendix) to ensure their compliance with state confidentiality laws and with local library policy. Volunteers under the age of 18 will also require a parent/guardian signature on the Volunteer Agreement form.