Download the Adult Volunteer Application
Download the Volunteer Accommodation Request Form
**All applications are typewriter PDF forms. Printing or scanning is not required to email a completed application. **
What is the Adult Volunteer Program?
Our volunteers contribute in so many ways! Volunteers re-shelve materials so our customers have access to stories and information. Volunteers lead a wide variety of community programs so our customers can learn new skills. Volunteers sell or repurpose materials at Recycled Reads so our community moves towards its goal of zero waste. Volunteers help preserve and document information so generations will have access to Austin History. And so much more! Check out our Volunteer Opportunities webpage for current listings.
What day and time can I volunteer?
The Austin Public Library has volunteer assignments to fit most schedules. Volunteer Services places volunteers during most operational hours, including weekdays, evenings, and weekends from open to close. Individual schedules vary based on volunteer position, location needs, supervisor availability, and volunteer availability. The majority of our volunteer opportunities are long-term and most positions require a minimum three month commitment or more. We do sometimes have short term projects or special event opportunities.
Where can I volunteer?
We have volunteer positions at all Austin Public Library locations. This includes the Faulk Central Library, the Austin History Center, 20 branch locations, Recycled Reads, and Outreach programs. Refer to our webpage for information on our locations at http://library.austintexas.gov/locations. For information on the Austin History Center, please visit http://library.austintexas.gov/ahc and for more information on Recycled Reads, please visit http://library.austintexas.gov/recycled-reads.
What if I need community service hours?
Please go to the sidebar Educational and Community Service Opportunities for full details on minimum hours, deadlines, and additonal forms.
Who can participate?
The Adult Volunteer Program is open to those 17 years or older. In order to participate in this program, you must:
- Find an current volunteer opportunity that matches your skills and interests.
- Be 17 years or older by the date of the application.
- Complete an Adult Volunteer Application. Email the completed application as a PDF attachment.
- Complete an additional Community Service Form and/or Accommodation Request Form (if applicable). Email the completed forms as PDF attachments.
- Complete an interview with the Location Supervisor/Volunteer Coordinator.
- Accept a placement offer. ** Please note: Not all all interviews/applications result in a placement offer.**
- Complete a successful background investigation. This includes fingerprinting for applicants who have lived outside the state of Texas within the last 10 years.
- Attend mandatory orientation and training.
- Commit to volunteering for the required schedule and minimum commitment length for the volunteer position. Most positions require a minimum of 2 hour shift once per week for a minimum of three months. Recycled Reads requires a minimum 4 hour shift once per week for a minimum of six months.
- Commit to recording volunteer hours at least monthly into VICNET, the online database for tracking volunteer hours.
How do I apply?
Applications are accepted for current volunteer opportunities only. Check out our Volunteer Opportunities webpage for current listings. Complete the application process by:
1. Emailing the completed application and any additional forms as a PDF attachment to Volunteer Services at APL.Volunteers@austintexas.gov. The application/forms are typewriter PDF forms. You may type directly into the form and save the completed application to your computer. Printing or scanning the completed document is not necessary. We are unable to accept applications in other formats (Word, Google Docs, etc.) at this time.
2. Mailing the completed application to:
Austin Public Library
PO BOX 2287
Austin, TX 78768-2287
Volunteer Services will send an email (usually within 3 business days) confirming receipt of your application.
When will I know whether I am accepted?
Placement offers will be sent via email by the Volunteer Services Coordinator. Volunteers will have 7 business days to respond and may accept or decline any placement offer. After 7 business days, Volunteer Services may rescind the placement offer in order to fill the volunteer position with another qualified applicant. Submission of an application or attending an interview does NOT guarantee a placement offer.
When can I start volunteering?
Volunteers may start volunteering once mandatory orientation/training and a successful criminal background investigation (CBI) are completed. Volunteer Services will send a notification email once an applicant has been cleared to begin volunteering. The length of this process depends on several factors including: scheduling of orientation/training, completion of CBI paperwork, and whether the applicant requires fingerprinting.
What does the criminal background investigation include?
Applicants are asked to complete a criminal background investigation (CBI) based on the requirements of the volunteer position. Applicants fill out a City of Austin Notice and Disclosure Form giving permission for the City of Austin to complete this review. The CBI is processed through the City of Austin's Human Resource Department by reviewing your complete criminal history using records available from the Texas Department of Public Safety. If an applicant has lived outside the state of Texas within the last 10 years, this process will also include fingerprinting. Applicants are directed to schedule an appointment to get fingerprinted at a contracted location. Austin has locations which are open Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm. This process usually takes 5-7 business days but may take 14-21 business days if fingerprinting is included. The Austin Public Library pays for all criminal background investigations and there is no charge to the applicant. Annual criminal background investigations will be conducted without further notice for the duration of the volunteer position.
Who do I contact if I have questions?
Please contact Deborah Scharven, Volunteer Coordinator at 512-974-7443 (or Relay Texas 711) or APL.Volunteers@austintexas.gov with any questions you may have.