Hot Topics Archive

Month Topic Update
Hot Topic for May 2023 Volunteer Management Software Comparisons

Looking for Volunteer Management Software?  Here are links to recent comparisons:

What's New for April 2023 Recently added resources

Do you work with library volunteer coordinators/ liaisons in your branches or other departments? If yes, here are a couple examples of guidelines created by other library volunteer engagement coordinators in that position: (Note: If you’ve got one to share, please e-mail to me at

       Deschutes Public Library, Oregon

       Metropolitan Library System, Oklahoma City

       Columbus Metropolitan Library, Ohio


Building Staff Buy-In for Volunteer Engagement -- January 18, 2023 Webinar recording


Developing and Managing Volunteer Programs


Two one hour December webinars presented for AmeriCorps members attached to California Library Literacy Services are now available for viewing by all:

Volunteer Engagement 101 -- Learning Objectives included: What Motivates Volunteers, Utilizing Skilled Volunteers, and Designing Volunteer Job Descriptions and Recruitment Plans. NOTE: Passcode required to view the video: Rr2sqKs+

Volunteer Engagement Tools for Success which includes a tour of best practices on VolunteerMatch is archived separately here: NOTE: Passcode required to view the video:  2%czJp



Hot Topic for March 2023 Volunteer Recognition

Rethinking Volunteer Recognition


Volunteer Appreciation Guide


Volunteer Recognition: Just Say No to Years of Service Awards


Volunteer Recognition Ideas


Using the Internet to Recognize Online Volunteers


Staff Volunteer Appreciation Survey


Ways to Appreciate Volunteers Without Centering Them as the Hero

Hot Topic for February 2023 Friends of the Library

Resources for Friends of Libraries


Connecting with Today’s Volunteers to Transform the Friends of the Library (1 hour archived webinar)


Mesa (AZ) Public Library's amazing online booksale operation (about $100,000/year) is volunteer driven and supervised by the library's volunteer coordinator. We appreciate Mesa sharing a 10- minute video about the project, as well as the volunteer job description and a number of invaluable, well-researched training pieces that can be used to prepare volunteers to take on these roles.


Beyond Younger Volunteers: White Paper on What Rural Friends Groups Need to Thrive


How to Recruit New Members for Your Association on Social Media


Book Store Fundraiser – “Secret Santa” – Indianapolis IN

What's New for January 2023 Recently added resources

Tips for Communications and outreach that honor diversity, equity, and inclusion


7 Tips for Managing Volunteers


Tips to Attract & Retain Skilled Volunteers that Grow Your Nonprofit


How to Align Your Mission with Millennials and Civic Engagement


The Virtual Volunteer Life Cycle: A Complete Guide

What's New for December 2022 Recently added resources

Changing the Frame: Civic Engagement Through A Racial Equity Lens


First Day Volunteer Orientation Checklist


Reading Buddies Volunteer Job Description – Columbus OH


Developing a Successful Intern Program


Teen Volunteer Summer Reading Program Orientation Agenda


QuickStart Guide for New Volunteers


Rethinking Retention: Understanding Strategic Volunteer Relationships

Hot Topic for November 2022 Trustees Resources

California Public Library Trustees Toolkit

Resources for Library Trustees by State

Nonprofit Board Member Codes of Conduct and Ethics

Statement of Ethics for Library Trustees - Cedar Rapids IA

Board of Trustees Policy Manual - Cedar Rapids IA

Taking Action on Board Diversity: Five Questions to Get You Started

If Your Board Looked Like Your Community

Working with Legislators: An Advocacy Briefing Guide for Board Members

3 Tips for Finding New Board Members

Five Survey Templates to Measure Volunteer and Board Satisfaction

What's New for October 2022 Recently added resources

Teen Team Volunteer Program Assistant Job Description


Volunteer Orientation and Training: The Ultimate Guide


Volunteer Appreciation: Not just a week, but a culture


Home Delivery Driver Agreement


15 Most Popular Strategic Planning Templates


Insights & Impact 2020: Measuring the Social Impact of Volunteerism

Hot Topic for September 2022 Video Clips from Breauna Dorelus of Connecting the Cause

White Supremacy in Volunteerism – Perfectionism – (20 minutes)


Creating a Community Centered Volunteer Orientation – (14 minutes)


Ways to Appreciate Volunteers without Centering them as the Hero - (19 minutes)


Memorializing Volunteer Experiences without Harming the Community you Serve -- (15 minutes)

Hot Topic for August 2022 New to Volunteer Engagement? - Links to Get You Started (Archived Webinars)

Volunteer Engagement 101


Writing Accurate & Useful Volunteer Position Descriptions


Strategies for Attracting Today’s Volunteers


Playing by the Rules: Creating an Effective Volunteer Handbook


Designing Virtual Opportunities, Managing Remote Volunteers


VolunteerMatch “Tour” – Using VolunteerMatch to Recruit Skilled & Virtual Volunteers


Best Practices for Recruiting Online

What's New for July 2022 Recently added resources

A Savior No One Needs: Unpacking and Overcoming the White Savior Complex

Volunteer Exit Survey – London Public Library

Annual Report on Volunteer Engagement – Los Angeles Public Library

Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Resources - California State Library

Sample Confidentiality Statement

Recruit Volunteers Online: Find Your Next 20 COVID Superheroes with Smarter Strategy

Hot Topic for June 2022 Get Involved Recorded Webinars - January through June 2022

January 19 -- Outreach Services & Volunteer Resources… A Match Made in Library Heaven

January 26 -- Sticky Situations: Applying Ethics to Your Work with Volunteers

February 10 -- Best Practices for Recruiting Online

March 17 --  Building Back Better: Assessing Needs & Identifying New Opportunities

March 31 – I Just Don’t Have Time: Prioritize Your Way to Productivity

April 14 - Social Media and Volunteer Engagement

April 20 - California Library Volunteer Leaders: Live Open Online Discussion on Diversity Equity & Inclusion in Volunteer Engagement

May 12 – Pushing Back on Privilege in Volunteerism

May 26 – Understanding the Multi-Gen Mix

What's New for May 2022 Recently added resources

Virtual Volunteers: Keys to Success and Sustainability

10 Must Have’s for a Well-Crafted Volunteer Job Description

15 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Volunteer Coordinator

Library Express Homebound Delivery Volunteer – Indianapolis Public Library IN

Home Delivery Driver – Indianapolis Public Library IN

Adult Volunteer Application – Arlington Heights IL

Adult Volunteer Application – Lincoln City OR

Hot Topic for April 2022 Gaining Staff Buy-In for Volunteer Engagement

Build Staff Buy-In for Volunteer Engagement

Grow Staff Volunteer Harmony

Confidentiality and Other Objections to Volunteers

Gaining Staff Buy-In for Volunteer Engagement

Preparing Co-Workers to Lead Volunteers Online & On Land

Union Issues and Staff Resistance

What Leaders of Volunteers Can Do to Gain Executive Attention

Could Volunteers Replace Paid Staff?? Have No Fear!

Hot Topic for March 2022 Sample Forms

COVID Liability Release Form – Sherwood OR

Records Retention Practices – Indianapolis Public Library IN

Vaccine Verification Form for Volunteers -- San Jose CA

Volunteer Reference Check Form -- Indianapolis Public Library

Volunteer Reference Check Questions – Kitchener Public Library

Confidentiality of Customer Records Form

Volunteer Time Record – Fresno County Library

Workers Comp Coverage Volunteer Agreement

For Sample Volunteer Applications Click on Management Tools, then from the Drop Down Menu select “Adult Volunteer Applications” or “Teen Volunteer Applications” and click “Apply”

More may be found by typing "forms" into the search box.

Hot Topic for February 2022 Skills-Based Volunteers

Assistant Volunteer Coordinator

Virtual Job Coach

Volunteer Job Coach

Tech Tutor

Tech Coach

Public Relations Strategist

Social Media Specialist

Social Media Specialist 2

Coordinator, Photo and Video Services

Computer Coach Program Coordinator

Volunteer Screeners

Small Library Skilled Volunteer Success Story

Creation Station Coordinator

45 Unique Useful Projects for Skilled Volunteers

Capacity Commons Guidebook on Skills-Based Volunteerism

Skills-Based Volunteerism 201: Project Scoping and Planning

Skills-Based Volunteering Toolkit


What's New for January 2022 Recently added

Volunteer Application – Fresno County Library

Volunteer Handbook – Fresno County Library

Civic Life Today: A Millennial Perspective – 2021 Points of Light report

Tech Tutor Volunteer Position Description

The Best Volunteer Management Software to Meet Every Need

Volunteer Job Description – Job Center Coach – Butte County CA

Teen Conduct Agreement Columbus Metropolitan Library, Ohio

Co-Creating Racial Equity in Volunteer Engagement

Hot Topic for December 2021 Virtual Volunteer Position Ideas

Virtual Job Coach

Closed Captioning Volunteer

Podcast Transcription Volunteer

Spanish Language Virtual Document Translator

Tutor an Adult Learner Virtually

Social Media Ambassador

Virtual Volunteer Ideas for Teens

Examples of Virtual Volunteering Activities

Virtual Volunteering: A Guide for Nonprofits

22 Simple Tips for Managing Virtual Volunteers 

Hot Topic for November 2021 MORE VolunteerMatch Tips and Tricks

Post Virtual Volunteer Opportunities -- NOTE: Virtual opportunities don’t show up in a local search, and in person opportunities don’t show up in a virtual search – if you’re offering an opportunity both ways (i.e., volunteers can come to the library to do it OR they can do it online) you should post it twice – once as virtual and once as local. Using the Copy feature will keep you from having to type it all twice: 

Get Involved/VolunteerMatch widget - This 3 minute video shows how our Get Involved/ VolunteerMatch widget on your library's website will help recruit more volunteers – California libraries can request the widget code from me at so your IT folks can post it. If posting the widget is not an option, you can simply post a link to

Looking for another way to make your volunteer opportunities more visible to the best potential volunteer matches for your position?  

Need to Copy an opportunity to post it on multiple branch accounts or tweak it just a bit? No need to re-type!

Did you know that you can add “shift” options to your VolunteerMatch posts?

If you only have a limited number of openings for one of your VolunteerMatch posts, you can change “Sign Up” to “Express Interest

    Hot Topic for October 2021 Tips to Improve Your VolunteerMatch Results

    Re-posting – Best and easiest thing you can do to make your volunteer listings more visible to volunteers on VolunteerMatch

    Include a photo of what it looks like to be a volunteer in the position (more effective than a logo or picture of your library)

    Need good photos of volunteers in action? -- Click on Photos then use Dropdown menu to select the volunteer role.  These are professionally taken, photo waivers signed and sized for VolunteerMatch!

    Promote Your Listings -- If you have a paid VolunteerMatch account (California Libraries can get one free from the California State Library – e-mail another one of the features you get is called "Promote Your Listings." This 90 second video shows how it can add a self-updating Volunteer page to your library's website.

    VolunteerMatch/LinkedIn Reccruitment Partnership - How to get LinkedIn to offer your skilled volunteer position to qualified candidates

    VolunteerMatch “Tour” – Using VolunteerMatch to Recruit Skilled & Virtual Volunteers