The mission of the Tulare Public Library Volunteer Program is to encourage and expand the involvement of our diverse community members in the growth of the library, and themselves.

Introduction:

Those interested in volunteering at the Tulare Public Library must complete and submit a Volunteer Application. The application will be reviewed and processed by the appropriate Volunteer Team member in a timely fashion. A Team member will then contact the applicant to schedule them for the next Training/Orientation. Listed below are the guidelines and policies for volunteering at Tulare Public Library:

  • The minimum age to volunteer is 10. There is no maximum limit.
  • Written parent/guardian permission is required before volunteers under the age of 18 may begin their service.
  • Volunteers under the age of 13 are limited to one (1) hour per week, unless part of a family group.
  • Volunteers will NOT conduct any financial transactions.
  • Volunteers will attend monthly training sessions & meetings.
  • Library staff has the right to terminate any volunteer if the situation merits.
  • Library staff will provide letters of reference for volunteers who request them. Volunteers wanting such letters must provide adequate time for staff to complete them prior to the deadline.

Job Orientation and Training:

A staff member will provide the following orientation:

  • Review the Volunteer Policy
  • Review Job Duties & Expectations
  • Confirm Schedule & Hours
  • Confirm knowledge of sign-in/sign-out procedures
  • Supply ID badge
  • Tour of the Building
  • Introductions to Library Staff Members & other volunteers
  • Provide Safety Orientation
  • Task-specific training

Tasks that may be Performed: (Task assignments will depend on the interest and age of the volunteer)

  • Shelving & Shelf-reading (mandatory for all volunteers)
  • Assisting Staff with programs & projects
  • Light cleaning
  • Basic clerical work
  • Technology Docent (Computer Lab Assistant)
  • Tutoring

Appearance

Volunteers need to present a positive image to the public. It is expected that volunteer's dress and appearance will be appropriate for a business environment and in keeping with the work assignment.

Badges

Tulare Public Library Volunteer Badges must be worn at all times while volunteering in the library. Volunteer Badges must be turned in prior to leaving at the end of the shift.

Customer Service

Volunteers often come into contact with library patrons and may well be the first official contact a patron has with the library. It is important, therefore, that volunteers maintain a professional, friendly demeanor at all times. Volunteers may answer questions such as "Where is the bathroom?" or "What time does the library close?" if they are comfortable doing so. All other questions should be referred to library staff.

Confidentiality

Volunteers are not allowed to work at the circulation desk. All transactions are strictly confidential. This includes any information about materials a patron has looked at, asked for, or checked out, as well as reference questions asked by library users.

Personal Data

Volunteers are responsible for updating their personal data, such as change of address, emergency contact, contact telephone number, etc., with the Volunteer Coordinator.

Telephone and Equipment Use

The library is a place of business. Personal telephone calls are prohibited except in the case of an emergency and then must be kept brief and not made at a public desk. Ask a staff member if you need to make a telephone call. Long distance calls are not allowed. Library owned equipment, including copy machines, fax machines, computers, supplies, and other materials are for Library use only and may not be used for personal business.

Employment

Volunteers who are interested in paid employment with the Library must apply and compete with all other applicants.

Fingerprinting

All Tulare Public Library Volunteers working with children must be fingerprinted by the City of Tulare Police Department and receive clearance before they can begin their assignment.

Disciplinary Procedures

Volunteers, in their capacity as unpaid staff, are expected to meet the same standards of professionalism required of library staff. Because an unsatisfactory volunteer is an unfair burden upon fellow volunteers and library employees, those who fail to meet the requirements of the job descriptions or violate library policies will be dismissed.

Leaving the Volunteer Program

To end a volunteer commitment, please notify the Volunteer Coordinator of the decision and the effective date