Volunteering with Books on Wheels
Books on Wheels is a service of the Arlington Public Library. Library volunteers bring books and other items to isolated community members in their homes, once or twice a month. There are no fines or costs for patrons, so getting a new book is easy and riskfree. This program expands the lives of many seniors who can no longer come to the library themselves. As of 2016, we have brought 5,000 items to twenty different locations.
We are looking for more volunteers in order to expand the program’s reach. We want to keep Arlington reading, even as more baby boomers become senior citizens. Volunteering with Books on Wheels requires your own transportation; the ability to lift around twenty-five pounds; and a few hours commitment a month. We provide tote bags and rolling carts to transport books. Library staff also selects books to take on visits, though as you get to know your patrons, we’ll be glad for your input.
Background checks are required for all volunteers. Once you’re approved, we’ll
be in touch to set up training and schedule your visits. Bring a buddy! We
encourage you to volunteer with a friend or family member.
Is Books on Wheels for You?
Volunteering with Books on Wheels is a rewarding position. You’ll deliver books and other library materials to a regular group of seniors, so you’ll soon form relationships with your patrons. You’ll learn their stories. If you have a passion for seniors, and for talking about books, this position could be a great fit.
Why is reading Important?
Reading is a great way to spark memories and keep the mind sharp, but visiting the library to choose a good book is no longer an option for many seniors. Disability, low income, and lack of transportation may isolate seniors. Books on Wheels volunteers bring books, which engage and stimulate the mind. Books on Wheels also reduces senior isolation. For many of these patrons, these visits are also social occasions.
What will you deliver?
Books and audiobooks are our most popular items! Volunteers deliver more than that, however. You are the library’s link to your patrons. The Arlington Public Library offers other programs for seniors, such as shows, art classes, and Kindle eReaders to support book clubs. These programs are most successful when we already have Books on Wheels in place.