At the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, we are tremendously fortunate to have an army of volunteers who help us with many important library functions. Without our terrific volunteers, I don’t know how we’d accomplish many of the amazing things that we do.
Our volunteers range in age from teenager to senior citizen, have all different abilities, and come from all walks of life. We have volunteers who come to us from Pittsburgh Public Schools – Obama Academy, who were featured in an article on the local NPR station. We also host an intern every year from Nazareth Prep, who works with us one day a week during the school year and learns the ins and outs of working in a recording studio. We also host volunteers from various groups for people with various disabilities including physical, intellectual, and visual. In addition to groups, we have many individuals who come in as well.
So, with so many volunteers, what do they all do? Well, they do a lot. You may notice if you regularly read this blog that we have a recording studio where we record books that become available for individuals who receive NLS (National Library Service for the Blind and Handicapped) services nationwide. Volunteers are involved in every part of the book recording process. Volunteers narrate, monitor, edit, and produce the books that we record here. These volunteers differ in how often they come in and what they do, but they are all extremely dedicated to making books available to people with print disabilities. Other volunteers do things like inspecting our audiobooks as they return in the mail (that’s a lot of cartridges, between 2,000 and 4,000 books a day) to ensure that the books aren’t damaged or the wrong book isn’t in the wrong case. Volunteers also help us with clerical tasks such as making copies and shredding documents.
As I mentioned in the beginning, we are incredibly fortunate to have such an army of dedicated volunteers. Our volunteer coordinator, Mark, is also amazing, ensuring that everything is coordinated between volunteers, agencies, and the work that needs to be done here. We do a lot of amazing work here at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh- Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped! Most of that work would not be possible without the help of our amazing volunteers. Thank you to all of them!