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Library volunteers needed to provide reading lifeline

PUBLISHED: 11:45 07 April 2019

Bromley Home Library Service needs volunteers. Picture: Melissa Page

Bromley Home Library Service needs volunteers. Picture: Melissa Page

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An appeal has gone out for people who love books and want to really get involved in library work to volunteer for the Bromley Home Library Service.

The Royal Voluntary Service are the organisers and they say they need volunteer-coordinators and volunteers who love books and reading.

The service covers the entire London Borough of Bromley and is looking to recruit volunteer coordinators for Bromley Central, Beckenham, Biggin Hill, Burnt Ash, Chislehurst, Hayes, Mottingham, Orpington, Penge, Petts Wood, Shortlands, Southborough, St. Paul’s Cray and West Wickham libraries.

They will liaise with local libraries, manage a network of local volunteers to arrange book deliveries to clients, recruit new volunteers for the service and build relationships with local community groups to promote the service.

Volunteers for the service choose and deliver books and share their love of reading with those whose mobility and social interaction are limited.

They also provide a useful check on the safety and well-being of older people.

Shauna Teevan, service manager for Bromley Home Library Service said: “For people who enjoy reading or listening to an audio recording but find getting out of the house challenging, this service offers a vital link to the local library.

“The service enables people to carry on doing something they enjoy and helps alleviate feelings of isolation and loneliness.

“We want to be able to link even more people to local libraries which is why we’re looking for more volunteer-coordinators and volunteers to help us expand the service across Bromley.

“This helps to alleviate boredom, isolation, and loneliness which can be a real problem for older people that are housebound.”

There’s full training, so no experience is necessary. They must be over 17, though.

Carol Bowen, a volunteer coordinator for Bromley Home Library Service, said: “It is a lifeline for clients who can’t get to the library themselves.”

And volunteer Eve Barrington, added: “The readers I help and their families and carers are always so grateful. It is something we may take for granted.

To find out more, phone Shauna Teevan on 07826 511094 or email shauna.teevan@royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk or visit www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk/volunteer

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