Volunteering at the Library

Come join in the fun at the Indianapolis Public Library and be a part of the mission to enrich lives and build communities through lifelong learning! ! There are a variety of volunteer opportunities available for you, your family or group.

If you are interested in any of the volunteer opportunities listed below, or are looking for a group volunteer project, please contact the Library’s Support Programs & Volunteer Resources Office at 317-275-4046, or use our Volunteer Opportunities email contact form.

Contact Indy Reads, a library partner organization, if you are Interested in providing basic literacy training / tutoring to illiterate and semi-illiterate adults.

Special Event Volunteering

The Library is always on the lookout for out-going volunteers to help greet and assist the public who attend special Library programs. Volunteers who assist with special programs are utilized on an “on call” basis depending on the need for volunteer assistance. Most special programs are held in the evening or on weekends.

Special Event Volunteer, various sites. Variety is the spice of life! Let us know if you’d like to be added to the Special Event Volunteer list. We’ll contact you throughout the year when there are special event opportunities. (Holiday parties, Galas, Author book signings, and more!)

Children’s Day – Central Library – April 1, 2017, 2 shifts (9:30 to Noon, 11:30 to 2:00).  Join in the fun of a festival event for families celebrating literacy!  Volunteers will help with prize redemption, crafting, and directing our guests to the various  activity areas of the festival.  Spanish speakers would be a huge help!

All American Boys project – Central Library – April 10 &11, (1 shift per day, 10:00a to Noon). Do you love to work with youth? Co-authors of All American Boys will be speaking to 150 middle school/high school students each day and signing books. Volunteers are needed to help the students with an art activity which will follow the discussion. FMI about the event: http://www.indypl.org/events/featured/meet-authors-all-american-boys/.  Six to eight adult volunteers needed for each day.

Digital Collection Transcription – A Virtual Opportunity for 1 to 100+.

Can’t leave home or the office, but still want to help? The purpose of this collection is to provide access to digital images and recordings of cultural and historical interest to Indianapolis residents as well as students, researchers and others. Volunteers, age 14 and up, are asked to electronically transcribe, tag, and increase the overall value of the digital collection. Consider transcribing audio stories of our Indianapolis neighbors as part of the Families Talk program, identifying locations of antique Indianapolis postcards on a map or similar projects. This opportunity can be completed in your home, place of work, classroom, or in our computer lab (max 12 people). We’ll provide training. Check out the digital collection, then contact us when you’re ready to get started!

Program Support Volunteers

Certain branches need volunteer assistance with programs, projects, and special events. The volunteer time commitment depends upon the activity.

  • East 38th Street Branch (map)
    Program/Classroom Assistant Volunteers (as scheduled).  Toddler Story Time!
  • Pike Branch (map)
    Teen Advisory: Teens, ages 14 and up to serve on the Teen Advisory. They will assist with library programs, library functions and provide feedback on teen services and materials.
  • Southport Branch (map)
    Now that the renovation is complete, the doors are open for the Teens Advisory to gather.  Teens ages 14 and up serve on the Teen Advisory. They will assist with library programs, library functions and provide feedback on teen services and materials.
  • Warren Branch (map)
    Warren Branch has completed a major renovation! Come see the transformation as you work alongside the staff to prepare for special programs.
  • Central Library (map): The Learning Curve
    Robotics After Noon –  Sundays from 12:30 to 3:30p, starting January 2017. Work side-by-side the Curve staff while assisting guests, age 3 to 18, to program LEGO robots, use an iPad to drive a Sphero, use colors to guide an Ozobot, and more! Training will be provided. We’d love to have 4 technology-focused volunteers participate in this program in teams of 2 on a rotational basis (2x a month).
    Instant Story Time and healthy spaces – Weekday, one time a week/month. The Learning Curve hosts hundreds of children every week. That means lots of eager learners and sticky fingers. We’re looking for a small team of 3-5 to adopt the Curve 1 time a week/month for a few hours for 3 to 6 months to provide instant story time (when there are youth in-house) and to keep the space clean and sanitized. We’ll provide training and supplies; your team provides smiles, enthusiasm and a bit of elbow grease. Day of week and time to be determined based on volunteer team’s schedule.
    The Public Collection: City Market Installation – Once a week. Volunteers will work Central Library staff to curate the collection by delivering free books to The Public Collection site outside of the City Market, tracking book counts and talking with the public about the project.  Must have own transportation to carry boxes of books; lifting up to 15 lbs.
  • Haughville Branch (map)
    Bring your friends and build a new Minecraft Club! Create new worlds, monitor the club’s activity during play, help new users, and assist the branch staff with physical and virtual set-up and clean-up. (Sitting, standing, walking, and some lifting) Tuesday evenings 5 – 8pm (volunteers age 14 and up).

Public Computer Support Volunteers

Library branches engage volunteers to help our public computer patrons with basic computer tasks such as printing, saving information to a flash drive, creating an e-mail account, and other general computer functions. (Adult volunteers only, please.)

Share your computer skills at one of the following branches:

Collection Support Volunteer

Several Library branches throughout Marion County utilize Collection Support volunteers on a regular basis. Volunteers assist in a variety of ways including pulling materials from the shelves, maintaining special collections and/or periodical sections, assisting with special projects or displays, just to name a few. The volunteer time commitment can be as little as 2 hours a week.

Collection Support volunteer positions open at the following locations:

 Library Express Volunteer

The Library Express program utilizes volunteers to select and deliver Library materials for patrons who are home-bound. The volunteer time commitment averages 2-4 hours a month. We are currently in need of volunteers to serve in the following zip code areas: 46218, 46235 (2 patrons) consistent delivery; plus 46236 and 46260 occasional delivery.

Library Express volunteers are matched to one patron for whom the volunteer selects and delivers materials to the patron’s home. Volunteers provide this service with their personal vehicle and must successfully complete the volunteer screening process.

To learn more about this volunteer opportunity, please contact the Library’s Support Programs & Volunteer Resources office at 317-275-4046.

Book Sale/Indy Library Store

Indy Library Store is looking for Book Sale volunteers! The Indianapolis Public Library conducts several book sales every year. Materials for these sales are obtained through the Library’s discarding process and from donations made by the general public. Book Sale Volunteers donate their time, usually once a week, on Monday, Wednesday, Saturday morning, or Thursday afternoon to process and shelve books in preparation for public and online sales. The tasks involve lifting, standing and walking throughout the store. Volunteers can choose to only work the actual sales, which occur every other month.

Please consider weeding your book collection and donating items to the Indianapolis Public Library. Materials can be dropped off during business hours at your local library branch, the Indy Library Store (2450 N. Meridian Street), or for large donations pick-up service can be arranged.

Belong to a book club?

Beginning in 2017, book club leaders can check out a nifty canvas bag with multiple copies of a book and leader notes & discussion questions!  We’re working on building our collection so when your book club is finished with a book, consider bringing all the copies to IndyPL, then check out the offering at your local library for your next discussion.

Group/Team Projects

We welcome volunteer groups to engage with the Library in a variety of ways including work-days sprucing up a branch, conducting a book/supply drives, preparing the Indy Library Store for the next sale, and Days of Service. Let us know how we can help you designing a project for your team by contacting the Library’s Support Programs & Volunteer Resources Office at 317-275-4046, or use our Volunteer Opportunities email contact form. We look forward to collaborating with you!


Indy Reads, an adult literacy program in partnership with the Library, seeks volunteers to serve as basic literacy or ESL tutors. A background in education is not required. Volunteers will receive comprehensive training. To learn more about this and other volunteer opportunities, call Indy Reads at 317-275-4040 or visit Indy Reads for more information.