Many Hands Make a Great Library

By Christine Mwangi, Director of Fund Development

It is hard-wired in all of us to be social beings who enjoy connecting with each other. While the effects of COVID-19 continue to impact our lives, some things have not changed, like the need for volunteers at Kent District Library branches. At KDL, we continue to find innovative ways to empower an entire district through our literacy programs and our branch services.

We would like to thank every single individual that has volunteered their time or donated funds to KDL in the last year. We have been amazed by the outpouring of support from our community during these uncertain times.

Fresh and innovative thinking is needed now more than ever, because we recognize that our volunteers have unique attributes that make them essential to how effectively we can respond to the needs of our communities. We are committed to putting volunteers at the heart of the restoration efforts that will strengthen our community long after this stage of COVID-19 has passed.

To help us bring our strategic vision for volunteer services to life, we have recently welcomed our new Volunteer Coordinator, Corey Archambault, to our KDL family. She joins us from the east side of the state where she was an AmeriCorps Director. Corey has built an impressive career that centers on volunteerism, civic engagement and community development. In addition to the 25 grassroot projects that she has overseen— which include budget management, volunteer management and impact data collection — Corey installed and maintained six Little Free Libraries throughout the Flint community and is fluent in Spanish.

As in so many facets of our lives, we foresee a new normal for volunteering and we are certain that the fresh thinking happening today will have a long-lasting impact on the future of volunteering for development.

As Kent District Library continues to move towards offering full service, we are exploring virtual volunteer opportunities and updates are posted regularly on our website. If volunteering is something you are interested in, here are some steps to take:

1. Determine which area you want to serve.Opportunities that exist can include:
• KDL Free Library Stockers
• Tech Helper
• Community Outreach
• Branch Volunteers
• Program Assistants
• Special Events
• Take-home Projects

2. Apply on our website – kdl.org/volunteer.

3. Receive a warm welcome from Corey Archambault and branch staff (if applicable) and join the KDL family!

Of course, our first priority is, and has always been, the health and safety of our patrons, volunteers and staff. As an organization, we’re committed to doing what we can to help contain the spread of the virus so as to optimize health outcomes for everyone. Our volunteers help where the need is greatest, so check our volunteering webpage (kdl.org/volunteer) for what opportunities are available, or contact Corey Archambault at carchambault@kdl.org or 616.784.2099.

Our volunteer opportunities are a valuable point of entry to partner with KDL’s mission so you can help during this unique time of need. You may even find that volunteering with us is a good way to lift your spirits. Stay strong and volunteer on!

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