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Volunteer at the Library

Are you interested in helping at your local library? If you haven't applied to volunteer yet, what are you waiting for?

Apply to Volunteer


Volunteers assist with projects that range from shelving books to reading for the Talking Library.

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Businesses, nonprofits, churches, college groups and other community organizations may donate their time to help Nashville Public Library.

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Volunteer Opportunities

Thinking of taking the plunge? Browse our list of available volunteer opportunities. 

View individual volunteer opportunities



What do volunteers do?

Volunteers assist the library with a wide variety of tasks. About half of the assignments involve working with our collection; shelving, pulling materials from the shelves to be delivered to patrons in other branches, and scanning the books already on the shelves to make sure they are in the right place. Volunteers also assist with clerical support, provide special event assistance, and help people use computers.

Prospective volunteers are screened for aptitudes, skills, availability, and preferences before placement. We try to connect everyone with something they will enjoy and in which they will excel. We do not accept all prospective volunteers.

What age do I have to be to volunteer?

You must be at least 13 years old to volunteer. Volunteers under the age of 18 must have permission from their parent or guardian. Adult volunteers must agree to a background check before starting their volunteer service.

Is there a minimum time commitment?

Yes, volunteers need to commit to a regular, weekly schedule for a minimum of 6 months. Due to the time involved in bringing in new volunteers, as well as the cost associated with background checks for volunteers, the library only allows volunteers to begin when they have committed to a schedule and agree to 50 hours of volunteer service. 

If you cannot commit to 6 months of service to the library, or want to help help for shorter lengths of time than the library can accommodate, look for opportunities listed with Hands On Nashville.

Can I volunteer to read to kids?

Library staff are responsible for conducting programs at the library. Although there may be opportunities for volunteers to assist with these types of programs, library staff do the actual reading. The same is true of all other types of programs at the library.

Do I have to pay to park if I volunteer at Main Library?

You will be provided free parking at Main Library when volunteering.


Contact Us

Trena Pennington
Nashville Public Library
615 Church Street, Nashville, TN 37219
(615) 862-5783