COMMUNITY: Library looking for volunteers

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The new Community Partnership Library in Misterton is looking for more volunteers to keep the service open and increase opening hours.

The Library is now run by Misterton Parish Council in a unique arrangement with Inspire, Notts County Council’s innovative new cultural organisation.

Since opening in April, the parish council is now recruiting a second wave of volunteers to maintain and, hopefully, expand the local library service.

Full training is provided and volunteers are needed to work during the Library’s opening hours: Tuesday 2pm to 5.30pm, Thursday 2pm to 5.30pm, Saturday 9.30am to 12.30pm.

Volunteering in the library is a great way to meet new people, make new friends, enhance existing skills, and develop new ones.

In general, a library volunteer should be prepared to commit to a regular time, upwards of an hour a week.

Volunteering for this important community service is a great way to give something back to the community, and can provide work experience for younger people.

In return for their commitment, volunteers get full training, experience of working in a library, meeting and greeting library customers, and helping customers to find the resources they want.

Other key tasks include: re-shelving books and keeping the library safe and tidy, undertaking selected library routines and procedures, helping customers log on to computers, assisting with general library events, including preparing and offering refreshments and clearing up afterwards, helping to maintain the book stock by carrying out cleaning and repairs, helping with library displays, helping to promote the library service in the community and encourage local community groups, schools, playgroups, and other organisations to realise the benefits of library usage.

To help enhance volunteering, volunteers will also have regular support and guidance from a named member of library staff. And, in addition to the above, there are opportunities for people with particular skills and interest to become a ‘specialist’ volunteer, like an IT volunteer. Inspire runs a free IT training programme called ‘Try IT’. It provides basic, informal IT training to members of the public, often on a one-to-one basis.

Key tasks in this role include: supporting the promotion of TryIT in the community, helping to organise and deliver library-based IT sessions for customers who have little or no experience of using a computer, using pre-designed training handouts as a basis for each session, encouraging people to have a go at using a computer during national promotions such as Get Online Week and Silver Surfers Day.

The parish council hopes to open the library for more hours in the future.

The Misterton Centre’s opening hours will remain unchanged: Tuesday and Wednesday, 10am to 3pm, Thursday and Friday 10am to 2pm.

Further information on the role of volunteers and an application form is on the Inspire website: www.inspireculture.org.uk/get-involved/volunteer/

Anyone interested in volunteering to help support the library could also contact The Misterton Centre & Library on 01427 890646.