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Volunteer @ HMCPL

Types Of Volunteers

Star Volunteers are those individuals or groups who volunteer at the library based upon a willingness to serve our patrons and our community. A minimum of a 6 month commitment of service is required.

Community Service Volunteers are those individuals who volunteer at the library based on a court-ordered mandate or other similar arrangement. A minimum of 80 hours of community service is required to qualify to complete your community service Hours with HMCPL.

At this time, we are not accepting new Community Service applications.

Teen Volunteers are currently being handled at the branch level within the Youth Services Department at that branch.  Please refer to the branch-level webpage for information on their current needs for teen volunteers.

Note: All teen volunteer applications must be picked up and submitted in person at the branches.

Group Volunteers: The group coordinator must email our Volunteer Coordinator at with the following information for groups interested in volunteering at HMCPL:

  • Organization name
  • number of individuals volunteering
  • coordinator contact information
  • a basic description of your group and why you would like to volunteer at the Library.

The Volunteer Coordinator will then contact you via email or phone to discuss possible options.  Please be aware that any group volunteer events will require a minimum of one months' advance notice due to organizational and logistical planning.


Fine Re-payment/Work Program: Those individuals looking to volunteer to 'pay down' their library fines.  This program is separate from the volunteer program.  This program is NOT available in every branch.  In order to work to pay down your fines you must contact the main circulation desk at the Downtown Branch for program information.


Volunteer Eligibility

The Huntsville-Madison County Public Library (HMCPL) values the time and the interest of citizens who would like to volunteer.  Please be sure you are willing and able to meet the following requirements before completing an application:

  • All those interested in volunteering at HMCPL as either a Star Volunteer or a Community Service Volunteer must meet the requirements set forth above, and must complete the appropriate application form.
  • ONLY applications submitted via the online webform will be accepted. Paper applications will NO LONGER be accepted.
  • Please only apply for currently listed Open Positions.
  • All volunteers must be at least 14 years of age.
  • ALL volunteers will be required to attend a volunteer orientation prior to starting as a volunteer. Registration is required. Information will be provided upon acceptance of your volunteer application.


Volunteer applications take 7 to 10 days to process.  You will receive an email from the Volunteer Coordinator once your application has been reviewed.  Please apply ONLY to open positions listed AND ONLY if you are able to meet the time requirements specified above.


Volunteer Value Statement

Volunteers are important to the success of the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library (HMCPL) and to the delivery of its services to the public.  HMCPL values the time and commitment of citizens who volunteer.  Volunteers, on behalf of the Library and with staff direction, partner with staff to provide support necessary to implement the mission and programs of the library system.  Volunteers of the Library serve in many capacities; however, volunteers will not be placed in positions that could jeopardize the library's ability to operate if a volunteer failed to report to work.  Volunteers are viewed as a valuable resource, and therefore the staff of HMCPL aims to give volunteers meaningful responsibilities, appropriate orientation and training, effective supervision and recognition.  Volunteers are expected to perform their duties to the best of their abilities and to remain dedicated to the mission and vision of the Library.


Equal Opportunity Policy

The Huntsville-Madison County Public Library maintains a strong equal employment opportunity policy.  Volunteers are recruited, placed, trained, recognized and dismissed on the basis of competence and job performance, without regard to race, creed, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, national origin, marital status, disability or political affiliation.


General Roles & Responsibilities

  • When you arrive to volunteer you need to

    • Sign in at your designated area so we can keep an accurate record of the hours you work each week
    • Check with your supervisor for special instructions or tasks
  • You (unless otherwise trained) should refer all requests for information to the library staff, other than purely directional questions (e.g.. where is the bathroom; where is the children's area, etc.).
  • Huntsville-Madison County Public Library shall make use of the services of interested volunteers to supplement and not replace work done by the library staff.
  • You will work directly with library staff members to receive training and complete projects. All volunteers will be assigned one primary staff member to guide them in their work; however, staff members may offer guidance to any of the volunteers.
  • You may be terminated at any time at the Library's sole discretion with or without cause. Causes for termination include but are not limited to:
    • Not performing work at an appropriate level of capability
    • Negative attitude, offensive language, inappropriate dress or misconduct
    • Violation of city, state or federal laws
    • Harassment
    • Unexcused absences


Dress Code

Any time that you are at the Library in a volunteer capacity, you must wear your volunteer badge. We also ask that you wear appropriate clothing like in the examples given below. It can get chilly in the library, so you might want to bring along a light jacket or sweater.

Good clothing choices Not appropriate
  • Khakis
  • Jeans (in good repair)
  • Polo shirts
  • Unprinted t-shirts
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Athletic shorts
  • Mini-skirts
  • Short shorts or super low-rise jeans
  • Halter/tank tops or muscle shirts
  • Product t-shirts (alcohol, slogans with lewd phrases)


Attitude & Attendance

You are doing an important job by representing the Library, so smile! You will be helping the staff and the public so be prepared to be pleasant, friendly and helpful! You are a valuable resource for the library; your energy and talents help the library meet its commitment to providing quality service to the public.

You need to be prompt and present for your scheduled work hours. We will be expecting your help at that time and need to be notified in advance when you are unable to make it to the library. Please remind your supervisor the week before you go on vacation or other previously scheduled commitments. In turn, we will notify you if the library opens late or closes early for any reason.

If you can't come in at your appointed time, please let your department or branch supervisor know as soon as possible as there may be certain tasks or other duties that will need to be reassigned. 

Volunteers don't get paid, not because they're worthless, but because they're priceless. ― Sherry Anderson