Learn About Volunteer Opportunities

Library Volunteers Putting Books on ShelvesBecoming a Volunteer

Eligible volunteers must be at least 16-years-old and willing to commit an average of 3-6 hours a week if selected.  To apply for a volunteer position:

  1. Review our Volunteer Policy (PDF) outlining the roles, responsibilities, expectations, etc.
  2. Complete a Volunteer Application & Release Agreement (PDF) and return to the Administration Office at the Main Library, located at: 202 Cedar Street, Abilene, TX 79601.
  3. Your application will be reviewed. If there are available opportunities, an interview will be setup to meet with you and answer any further questions.
  4. If selected, you will be contacted to set up a time to come in for orientation and undergo training. A work schedule will also be established at this time.
    • Please note, submission of an application, or attending an interview, does not guarantee a placement offer.

We aim to match your skills, interests, experience, and availability to our volunteer needs and both short-term and long-term assignments are available. Volunteer hours per week may vary, depending on library needs and your availability.

General Volunteer Opportunities

Below is a list of standard volunteer positions; however, we may also need help in additional areas not listed.

  • Circulation Aide: Assists staff in basic duties including checking in materials, sorting carts to be shelved, assisting patrons using the self-checkout stations, retrieving patron holds, organizing staff materials behind the desk, etc.
  • Information Services Aide: Assists Reference/Information services staff with duties such as managing periodicals, genealogy research, vertical file maintenance, scanning, and assisting with computer equipment maintenance.
  • Program Aide: Helps children's and programming staff in the preparation of arts and crafts, puppetry, and additional projects utilized for regular programming. Involves cutting, folding, creativity, and ability to follow directions.
  • Shelf Reader/Paging: Straightens, shelves, organizes materials, helps patrons with basic questions, assist library staff in additional related duties.
  • Special Events Aide: Attends selected programming to assist library staff, greet guests, possibly participate in activities, and related duties. Requires and outgoing personality to deal with the public during busy events.
  • Technical Services Aide: Helps in the weeding process to withdraw materials, helps to complete reports to search for library materials, label materials, repair library materials, and other technical duties.

Additional needs may present themselves throughout the year for special events, summer reading club activities, etc. We will do our best to match you with a position that best suits your skills.

Volunteer Expectations

Successful volunteers will:

  • Arrive on time for scheduled shifts and be prepared to work.
  • Ask for clarification or help from library staff when needed.
  • Be dependable, willing to learn, and comfortable working with the public.
  • Complete duties independently and accurately after training.
  • Provide advanced notice if a schedule conflict develops.

Additional Volunteer Questions

When can I start volunteering?
Once you have been accepted into the program and completed your orientation, the volunteer coordinator (or supervisor if at a branch location) will establish a regular volunteer schedule suiting both parties' availability.
What location will I be volunteering at?
Volunteers are able to serve at any of our three branch library locations depending on need & available opportunities. We will try our best to match you with a preferred location if possible.
When will I know if I'm accepted into the program?
Once a completed application is reviewed, a prospective volunteer would be notified by the volunteer coordinator to setup an interview to review your application, answer questions, and go over available opportunities for placement.
Can I volunteer my time helping in areas not addressed in the application?
Yes, the standard assignments above outline some of the primary opportunities available. Additional tasks may be available and, at times, may be outlined on our page here. Such opportunities may include leading a program, assisting in community events, helping with administrative duties, tutoring, computer/technology instruction, etc. Please indicate any special skills you may have in the Volunteer Application form before submitting to the library.
Does the library do background checks for volunteers?
As part of the application process, you will need to consent to a background check performed by the Abilene Police Department and Human Resources should you be selected. Your application will not be complete unless you provide your consent.
Is there a dress code?
Yes, volunteers will be held to the same standards as library employees, although casual wear is acceptable. For more information, review the Expectations section of the Volunteer Policy (PDF).

If you're interested in volunteering at your Abilene Public Library, we look forward to receiving an application. If you have questions, contact the Main Library's Information Services Desk at 325-676-6025.