I was going to say that I have never volunteered within the library world, and I probably think that as a ‘Thing’ this was maybe not aimed at me. But then it occurred to me. I have been volunteering of sorts, against my will, despite assurances since June 2011, on daily basis. This is because since Bolton Libraries, of whom we sit within and rent space from, decided to remove their reference/in-depth enquiry desks and implement their ‘floor walking’ policy, my members of staff and I have had to deal with a lot more public library enquiries. I have statistics to back me up. I don’t know how I could add that to my CV though!

I would add that volunteering is important to libraries both as development opportunities to staff and the offering of ancillary services, but when it is instead of something (or someone), it is to the detriment to the service that that is doing it and the profession as a whole.

*update* as of 13/10/2011 – we as a library service have dealth with 276 ‘Public Library’ enquiries (since 1/4/2011), and at a rough guess 275 of them have started with ‘I can’t find a member of staff’.

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