Posted: Friday 1st September 2017
Thank you to our Summer Reading Challenge Volunteers
If you have visited your library during the past few weeks, you will be aware that this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, Animal Agents, is in full swing. Library staff across the county are being supported in running the challenge by an army of volunteers, the majority of whom are aged 14-24.
Many of these young people, known as Reading Hacks, volunteer with us throughout the year undertaking a wide variety of roles, from creating library displays to organising author events.
Here are what some of them have to say about their volunteering:
“Hertfordshire County Council has given me the opportunity to become more confident in interacting with a wide range of people.
I have really enjoyed being able to share my enthusiasm and passion for reading with so many young people in such a friendly and supportive environment.”
Anna, Bishops Stortford Library
“I joined the Library in the November of 2016 to help with my Duke of Edinburgh bronze award and I don't think I've had a boring week yet. Coming in on a Tuesday afternoon has been the highlight of my week, every week. The work's never dull and there's always something to do. I think the best part of it has been the people. I couldn't imagine working with anyone else. It's like a second home.”
Jack, Letchworth Library
“Volunteering for the summer reading challenge has been really fun. I love reading so helping younger people to read is something I have a passion for. I always look forward to doing it each year. The staff at Letchworth are lovely.”
Sophie, Letchworth Library
“I volunteer at the library as part of my Duke of Edinburgh volunteering (having done so from Bronze, I am now on my Gold Award). Having done the Summer Reading Challenge as a child on many occasions and volunteered to help with it last year, it is something that I was keen to be involved in again. The Summer Reading Challenge has allowed me to take on a different role at the library, improving my confidence as it involves me talking to some of the youngest members of the library, as they tell me about the books that they have read.”
Luke, Royston Library
Our volunteers are an amazing team, who make a huge contribution to their local communities. They provide wonderful reading role models and the children respond really positively to their enthusiasm.
We’d like say a massive thank you to all of them!
Volunteering at London Colney Community Library
Would you like to volunteer at London Colney Community Library?
Follow the link to find out more about working as a community library volunteer
We ask that new volunteers attend two induction sessions. We are offering these dates during September:
Session 1 - from 10am to 12pm on Tuesday 5 September
Session 2 – from 10am to 12pm on Monday 25 September
Apply here to register your place at these sessions or to request further information:
Join us for this new and exciting partnership project between the library service and local volunteers.
We are looking for people with coding skills to volunteer to run code clubs for 9-13 year olds in Hertfordshire libraries
Using Code Club materials and supported by library staff you’ll have all you need to get children excited about digital making.
Ask library staff for details or for more information
Volunteering in Community Libraries
Chorleywood and Redbourn were our first two community libraries to be launched in November 2015 and we are now working with a further six communities. It has been an exciting and encouraging experience for us to see how many local people have come forward to contribute to service delivery across the county and how so many skilled local residents are now adding value to library services. These libraries are real community hubs and vibrant local services for residents to enjoy and to get actively involved in.
Just a few months after their training began; volunteers are now experienced in providing front line customer services in libraries such as Kings Langley and Goffs Oak. The volunteer steering group at Wheathampstead has successfully recruited almost 50 volunteers who have attended induction sessions since May, which is a fantastic start. There are also a smaller number of regular volunteers at London Colney Library who are coming in on a weekly basis for library training. More volunteers also signed up for induction at a coffee morning earlier this month in the library.
All of our libraries are busy with the ever popular Summer Reading Challenge at the moment and many volunteers are enjoying listening to children talk about the books that they have read. Some volunteers groups are also planning ahead and thinking about activities for National Libraries week in October and some are already arranging events for Christmas in December. We are very impressed!
We also held our first public meeting at Sawbridgeworth during August, as that is the next community library project to be launched. A public meeting is planned for Knebworth during September. More details about both of these libraries coming soon….
If you would like to help at any of these locations, please use the contact emails below for each location to find out more!
Sawbridgeworth or Knebworth
A volunteer at Goffs Oak Library being shown how to use the self-service kiosk
We received a lovely message from one of our Hoddesdon Library volunteers:
“My name is Shirley Scott and I volunteer at Hoddesdon Library with the Baby Rhyme Time Project. I retired from paid employment in 2015 and, as part of my retirement plans, relocated to Hoddesdon.
I have always loved to read and been interested in the work of the Library Services. In January this year I went into Hoddesdon Library to enquire about volunteer opportunities. After an initial interview and induction, I started volunteering with the Baby Rhyme Time Group on 1st February.
My volunteer tasks involve generally overseeing two half hour sessions that take place on Wednesdays at 10.00 and 11.00am. I greet and sign in the Mums, Dads, Grandparents, Carers and their charges, checking that Health and Safety issues and requirements are addressed and adhered to and generally keeping an eye on proceedings.
Two members of the Library Staff run the sessions and encourage everyone to join in with their songs and activities. From my corner of the room, I observe and join in. Due to the enthusiasm and enjoyment of the participants, it’s very difficult not to be drawn in.
The sessions are normally fully subscribed and, at the end, everyone leaves with happy, smiling faces.
Volunteering with Baby Rhyme Time is one of the highlights of my week and the project is a job to be involved with. The Library Staff are a friendly, welcoming group who have gone out of their way to make me feel a valued member of their team. I also feel that, through my involvement, I am making a valuable contribution to the Local Community, getting to know new people along the way.
Thank you to Hoddesdon Library Service for making this possible”