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Support Your Library : Volunteer Opportunities for Adults

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Volunteer Opportunities for Adults

Please call the Volunteer Services information line at 206-386-4664 to learn about our current volunteer openings. Volunteers must be at least 18 years old for most of the following positions.


The Library does not place people who have court-ordered community service as volunteers. Contact the United Way of King County to learn about agencies that provide short-term volunteer opportunities.


Book Group Facilitator

Help Library staff coordinate a book discussion group at a branch. The volunteer may help the group select titles and research authors, develop questions and facilitate book discussions. A six-month commitment is requested.


Branch Support Volunteer

Assist the Library's branch staff with clerical tasks, packing donated books for the Friends of the Library's book sales and hosting community events. Volunteers typically assist staff for one to four hours per week. A three-month commitment is requested.


Children's Story Time Assistant

Help children's librarians provide a fun and enjoyable environment for story time participants at Library branches. Duties may include room set-up and clean-up, welcoming families, assisting children with crafts and singing songs with children. Attendance at story time sessions varies; volunteers must be comfortable interacting with young children in small and large groups. A four-month commitment is requested.


Computer Instruction Assistant

The Library offers classes for adults to learn computer skills, including how to use the Internet and email services. Volunteers help staff instructors by providing individual assistance for students during classes. Volunteers may be assigned to the Central Library or branches for at least six months.


Friends of The Seattle Public Library

The Friends of The Seattle Public Library(Opens a new window) is a community-based nonprofit group that supports special programs, fundraising and advocacy on behalf of the Library. The FriendShop at the Central Library is an innovative retail space that sells greeting cards, jewelry, gifts and stationery. The shop seeks volunteers who enjoy working with people and have retail experience. Volunteers also are needed at the Friends' book sales. For more information about providing volunteer services for the Friends, please go to http://friendsofspl.org/.(Opens a new window)


Gardening Assistant

Help the Library maintain attractive grounds! Teams of volunteers weed gardens, rake leaves and pick up litter at branches throughut Seattle from April through October. You can volunteer for gardening projects from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Thursdays or help with a one-time project. Adults and high school students 15 and older are welcome. 


Homework Help Volunteer

From September through June, volunteers help children and teens with homework assignments and developing academic skills at the Beacon Hill, Broadview, Columbia, Delridge, Douglass-Truth, High Point, Lake City, NewHolly, Northgate, Rainier Beach and South Park branches. See map of Library locations.

Volunteers assist students for two hours per week when the Seattle Public Schools are in session. Desired qualifications include completion of at least one year of college, strong English and mathematics skills, and experience with youth. Volunteers must be comfortable assisting students with homework assignments in small groups and individually on a drop-in basis. Please send your volunteer application to our Volunteer Services Coordinator by July 15 to be considered for next school year's volunteer openings. Interviews will take place in July and August (and as needed during the year).


Simple Mending Volunteer

Help Library staff keep the collections clean and attractive. Volunteers replace book jackets, tape torn pages, replace spine labels, repair minor spine damage and clean materials. Volunteers are assigned to the Central Library or a branch for at least four months.


Special Event Volunteer

Welcome and usher patrons at events sponsored by the Library and the Washington Center for the Book. Events include author readings, film screenings, cultural programs, Summer Reading Program events for children and the Global Reading Challenge for elementary school students. Most of the events take place in the Central Library auditorium.


Talk Time Facilitator

The Talk Time program gives immigrants and refugees opportunities to practice conversational English. Volunteers work as a team to plan and facilitate small group discussions on various topics. Talk Time sessions take place at the Central Library, and the Beacon Hill, High Point and Lake City branches. Our Outreach Services staff orient new volunteers throughout the year. A six-month commitment is requested.


Welcome Desk Volunteer

Welcome Desk volunteers introduce patrons and visitors to the Central Library's services, events and classes, and provide information about downtown Seattle. Desired qualifications include excellent public service and communication skills, familiarity with the Library and Seattle, flexibility and an ability to interact with people from all walks of life. A six-month commitment is requested. The monthly time commitment is negotiable.


World Languages Computer Instructor

The Central Library provides basic computer instruction in Chinese, Russian and Spanish. Bilingual volunteers help  librarians teach individuals how to use computers with a Windows operating system, Internet, email and Word basics. Volunteer instructors are scheduled to co-teach two to four classes per month with librarians for at least six months.


These Web sites provide information about other volunteer opportunities in the Seattle area: 


Download a Volunteer Application for Adults PDF(Opens a new window)


Volunteer computer instruction assistants help staff instructors teach computer skills by working with students one-on-one.