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Library Direct - volunteering

Library Direct volunteers visit residents who are no longer able to visit the library themselves due to ill-health, disability, mobility problems and/or caring responsibilities.

Although a large number of our Library Direct clients are elderly, Surrey residents of any age can and do use this service. As well as bringing the library to these residents, your visit is often a welcome social interaction and often encourage our clients to feel part of their wider community.

There are two different options for our Library Direct volunteer role, you can choose to be involved in both or just one of the options available:

  • Our Home Service delivers books and/or audiobooks to individuals in their own homes on a regular basis (monthly, fortnightly) and usually last between 20 - 40 minutes per visit.
  • Alternatively, if you would like to work beside another volunteer and visit a group of residents then our Community Settings service may be for you. This service, which mainly supports residential homes, provides a monthly visit that can take between up 2.5 - 3 hours which includes the time to select and return items to the library.

This role requires you to have a Disclosure and Barring check (DBS).

This is voluntary work and the amount of time you are able to give is appreciated. We would stress that for our Library Direct Home Service readers, continuity is essential; so you should be able to give a regular commitment in terms of day and time - be that on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis. When considering this type of voluntary work, you should consider the number of hours you can give, on which days and how often, which will determine the maximum number of readers you will be able to visit.

To give Library Direct Home Service readers a choice of reading and other material, a selection of books or talking books should be taken to each reader. Please be aware that there is some carrying of books involved.

As our Library Direct Home Service clients may be spread around a locality, it is helpful if you have access to a car, and you may claim petrol expenses.

Although it would be useful if you are a reader yourself, this is not essential. Staff at the library from which you are working will be able to give you some guidance to help you satisfy the reading tastes of your clients.

More information on the services provided by Library Direct is available online.

Apply for a volunteering role