Over the next 8-12 months Bovingdon Library will become a Community Library run by volunteers. A committee of volunteers is being formed to manage the conversion with the library services.
We are looking for people to join the Committee or volunteer about 2 hours a week to work in the library.
The library hours will remain the same.
We are now recruiting volunteers to support your community library.
If you would like more information about future volunteer drop-ins and induction training sessions, please e-mail your contact details to:
If you are interested in volunteering, please complete the form and return to the Parish Office in the High Street.
Volunteering in Community Libraries (From Libraries and Heritage Services, Hertfordshire County Council)
What do we hope to achieve?
- As part of the County Council’s Inspiring Libraries Strategy, Hertfordshire Libraries will work with local groups of volunteers to run our smallest Tier three libraries together
- Over a three year period we are launching fourteen Community Libraries. The first two were established in Chorleywood and Redbourn in November 2015 and further Community Libraries have now been established in Kings Langley, Wheathampstead and Goffs Oak.
- The initial stage for each library is a public meeting. From there we will identify potential steering group members to work with. In time, and with our support, this committee will then recruit more volunteers
It’s your community and your library too
How will this work?
- Partnership working is key to our joint success
- We will still maintain the buildings and information technology for you
- We will also continue to buy the library stock
- Volunteers will be the core part of the front line library staffing
- Volunteers have a range of skills and experience that add value to library services
Who can volunteer?
- We have a flexible approach to volunteering
- We believe everyone has something to offer
- The most important step is getting involved and having a go
- An interest in reading and working with the public is a good start
- Good customer service skills are important as we want everyone to feel welcome
- The ability to work as part of a team really helps as you’ll be working with other volunteers and library colleagues
- IT skills are always a bonus, but not essential should you just want to come in and help with shelving and tidying the books in the library
- Work at the heart of your community
- Make new friends whilst developing new skills
- Make a valuable contribution to a local service
- You only have to help when it’s convenient for you
What Will I Be Doing?
- Volunteer roles are based on individual strengths and nobody has to learn how to do everything!
- Opportunities are varied – from shelving and tidying stock, welcoming and helping customers, helping them to find books or reserve titles, or signing up new library members
- There are key daily tasks that involve dealing with the incoming and outgoing deliveries and post
- You will also be supporting customers to use our equipment including the self-service kiosks, PC’s or our new Library Link technology
- Some volunteers also help with opening and closing the library so you could become a key holder and help with the daily cashing up procedures
- Our family friendly libraries also offer a range of activities and events for young people, so you may want to help with these
- You may have other skills that will support your local steering group such as coordinating rotas; recruiting and training other volunteers; helping with local promotions or social media; or assisting us with basic health and safety checks
How much time should I commit?
- The time that you give is always flexible according to your individual circumstances. We understand that you may have lots of other commitments
- From a few hours per month to regular weekly shifts, your contribution will be agreed in advance with your community library rota coordinator
- Shifts are based on your library’s opening hours, as we are not proposing to change the current opening hours
What training and support will I receive?
- The handover to a fully-fledged Community Library is a gradual and phased process with lots of support along the way
- Hertfordshire Libraries will offer induction training for the new steering committee and the first cohorts of volunteers
- Each Community Library is paired with a larger library nearby, known as the buddy library. Colleagues from there will work alongside you to help give you confidence in carrying out the basic tasks
- For the larger tier 3 libraries, there will be a permanent element of library staffing always working with you for some of your library’s opening hours
- You will also be supported by our Community Services team who will be responsible for some of your ongoing development needs
- All volunteers and customers also have face to face access to our central enquiries team colleagues at Welwyn Garden City Library via the new Library Link screens
Here are some of the successes so far with our Community Libraries:
- Community Libraries in Chorleywood, Redbourn, Kings Langley, Goffs Oak and Wheathampstead have well-established committees who meet with us on a regular basis
- Over 40 regular volunteers work at Chorleywood, with similar teams at Redbourn, Kings Langley, Wheathampstead and Goffs Oak
- All of our Community Libraries successfully promoted and completed the Summer Reading Challenge for children last summer
- Community Library volunteers have organised events and activities for their libraries during the summer holidays
- Community Library volunteers have set up their own Facebook and Twitter accounts to promote the library and have also recruited more volunteers via Streetlife
- Some volunteers have used their volunteering activities in Community Libraries as springboards to new careers with the Library Service
It’s an exciting time for libraries and local communities to work together.
Your library is a vibrant and accessible part of your community which you can become an active part of.
Next steps if you’re interested…
- Sign up for our induction sessions and find out more
- Think about what skills you can offer
- Consider what skills you may gain from this volunteering experience