Worcestershire Libraries seek young volunteers for Summer Reading Challenge

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Worcestershire Libraries are on the lookout for enthusiastic young volunteers, aged 13-24, to embark on an exciting journey this summer. 

If you have a passion for reading and a desire to ignite the love of books in children, this could be the perfect opportunity for you! As a volunteer, you will have a chance to gain invaluable skills and experience, make new connections, and most importantly, have fun! All volunteers will receive comprehensive training and ongoing support from our dedicated library staff.

Worcestershire Libraries are seeking dedicated volunteers to contribute a minimum of 5 hours of their time over the summer, assisting library and learning staff in delivering this year's Challenge. Last year 92 young volunteers completed an impressive 1019 cumulative hours playing an integral part in helping deliver our annual Summer Reading Challenge. 

This year, we have a number of interesting and exciting opportunities for our volunteers to get involved in: 

General role - tasks include 
Helping libraries prepare for the SRC by designing and putting up displays and special collections of books, helping register children to the challenge, engaging in conversations about their reading choices, assisting in the selection of new books, distributing stickers and incentives, photocopying and organizing activity sheets and aiding children in accessing the SRC website.

Book specialist - tasks include 
Developing and maintaining well-stocked displays using library stock, creating a "Who Writes Like" display, providing recommendations for children's reading choices, conducting interviews with library staff for their recommended reads and display suggestions. Promoting reading for pleasure.

Event Planner - tasks include
Developing and overseeing competitions and events and planning and helping to facilitate special activities to encourage participation in the SRC.

At the end of the programme, each volunteer will be presented with a certificate of participation as a token of appreciation for their commitment.

Tiffany, a previous Summer Reading Challenge volunteer said: “I have spent so many years volunteering for the Summer Reading Challenge and found it such a fun and brilliant experience! I got to spend time chatting about books with children and encouraging them to read, helping with events at the library and making so many new friends! Volunteering has been such a rewarding experience and I carried on doing it for five years. It really helped build my confidence in talking to others and taking charge of my time volunteering and dedicating myself to a challenge that helps so many children!” 

The Summer Reading Challenge, a nationwide initiative coordinated annually by The Reading Agency in partnership with libraries across the country, aims to encourage children between the ages of 4 and 11 to indulge in the pleasure of reading during the summer holidays. 

Councillor Marcus Hart, Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Communities at Worcestershire County Council added: “The Summer Reading Challenge is always popular with our younger readers here in Worcestershire and I’m sure this year will be no exception. By joining as a volunteer, you have the power to make a real difference in the lives of children and ignite their love for books. Your involvement will create cherished memories, forge new friendships, and empower the next generation through the magic of reading.”

In addition to volunteering for the Summer Reading Challenge, Worcestershire libraries offer a variety of opportunities to support the delivery of library services and special community projects:

Customer service volunteer - meet and greet library customers/shelving, tidying, and processing stock.
Digital champion volunteer - provide digital support to library customers and use IT knowledge to support community projects.
Library service at home volunteer - choose books and/or deliver them to customer’s homes.
Library events volunteer - help run regular or one-off library events – in physical spaces and online.

To sign up online please visit the Summer Reading Challenge section of the Worcestershire County Council website. 
Alternatively, you can call 01905 822722 or drop into your local library and talk to a member of staff.