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Policy 4.1

Volunteer Policy

Adopted Date: June 2011
Reviewed Date: May 2022
Review Date: September 2024

Purpose of the Policy

The West Lincoln Public Library Board is committed to the utilization of all resources that further its goals. We believe that volunteers can enrich library services and help to inform the public about the library. We further believe that under an efficiently managed program, volunteers can perform tasks efficiently. It is recognized that volunteers enrich, but do not replace, the regular service offered by library staff.


The achievements of the goals of the library are best served by the active participation of citizens of the community. To this end the library accepts and encourages the involvement of volunteers within appropriate programs and activities.

The West Lincoln Public Library encourages the teamwork of paid staff and volunteers so that we can offer our users the best services possible. Volunteers contribute their unique talents, skills and knowledge of our community to enable the paid staff to concentrate on the work for which they are trained. Volunteers are an integral part of our team.

Volunteers are a valuable resource, requiring and warranting support and encouragement to maintain and develop their skills, and to ensure their continued involvement.

The West Lincoln Public Library accepts the services of volunteers, with the understanding that such service is at the sole discretion of the Supervisor, Administrative Services and/or Library CEO.

4.1.1 Confidentiality

Volunteers are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of privileged information to which they are exposed while serving as a volunteer. Volunteers are required to sign a confidentiality agreement and compliance with that agreement is a condition of their participation as a volunteer.

4.1.2 Paid Versus Unpaid Workers

Volunteers will enhance the work of paid staff, never replace it. At least two staff members must be present during all open hours. Volunteer resources should never be called upon to replace staff members, however, if an emergency staffing situation arises, and only one library staff member is available to cover evening hours, at the discretion of the Supervisor, Administrative Services, a volunteer may be asked to cover those hours along with the one staff member.

4.1.3 Job Descriptions

Volunteers will perform duties as outlined by Library Supervisors. Volunteer positions will be sufficiently flexible to allow for the best fit with the talents, skills, gifts, and limitations of each volunteer. The positions will be designed to meet the needs of the library, and to achieve its mandate first, rather than focusing on the needs of the volunteers.

Volunteers can expect an orientation period to become familiar with assigned duties.

Each volunteer should be familiar with his/her job description and feel comfortable in offering suggestions for changes to the position or its description.

4.1.4 Applying and Interviewing

Anyone interested in volunteering at the Library must first submit a volunteer application form. The Supervisor, Administrative Services will interview all persons applying for open volunteer positions so that the qualifications, ability and suitability of the individual may be determined. Only those applicants chosen for an interview will be contacted when an opening is available. The interview will offer prospective volunteers the opportunity to learn about the library, its mission, and available volunteer positions. Volunteers will provide a current police check upon accepting a position.

4.1.5 Training and Assessment

Volunteers will be trained in their assigned tasks, and given direction, by Library Supervisors. At the end of a designated time period, an interview with the Supervisor, Administrative Services will take place to evaluate the extent to which the objectives of both the organization and the volunteer are being satisfied.

4.1.6 Absence

Volunteers are expected to be reliable in the performance of their volunteer duties. Volunteers will inform the Supervisor, Administrative Services of any impending absence as far in advance as possible.

4.1.7 Volunteer Dismissal

Volunteers who do not adhere to the rules and procedures of West Lincoln Public Library or who fail to satisfactorily perform their volunteer assignments are subject to dismissal.

Grounds for immediate dismissal include, but are not limited to:

  • gross misconduct or insubordination;
  • being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs while performing volunteer assignments;
  • theft of property or misuse of equipment or materials;
  • illegal, violent or unsafe acts;
  • abuse or mistreatment of clients or co-workers;
  • failure to abide by the library‚Äôs policies or procedures; and,
  • unwillingness or inability to support and further the mission of the organization and/or objectives of the program.

4.1.8 Summary

Volunteers are special people whose donation of time and effort warrants special consideration. They need to know that their work is appreciated. Volunteers can be recognized in a formal way, through press releases, or an event in their honour.

Volunteer Forms

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