Volunteering for Your Local Library

I recently reposted an article about how libraries have changed in the past decade. Libraries are no longer about books but serve as hubs for the community.

My own local library in North Logan, Utah, a small town of about 8000 people, is a prime example of what’s happening nationwide. We have an excellent director who has a very broad vision. And our new executive board on the Friends of the Library are a new and energetic crop of people, who are willing to put hours and hours into helping existing programs and initiating new ones.

I got involved with my library in a roundabout way. Last year, the library started hosting a farmers and community market. I started out as a vendor, occasionally selling beaded jewelry. It was a lot of fun just being there on Saturday morning, getting to talk to residents of my community—vendors and market visitors alike.

Years ago, I worked as a copyeditor with the president of the Friends of the Library, and because she was also the initiator of said market, we got to talking, and she brought me onboard with the Friends to help out as the PR Director.

It was a rather steep learning curve for me and a rude awakening to the fact that putting on a one-day event consisting of a winter gift market and Christmas activities took an unbelievable amount of volunteer man hours. Never again will I look at any event in the same way. There are so many people involved in various ways behind the scenes to make it happen! But when it’s all over, you can say that you were part of making it happen, and it feels so good to own a little bit of community involvement.

If you love books, or if you’re interested in community programs and educational efforts in your neighborhood, volunteer some time at your local library. Most of them have a Friends of the Library organization. Those are generally non-profits run by volunteers who appreciate anybody willing to help and who will be able to put various talents to work. Go for it! You’ll be glad you did!

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