13 May 2014

National Volunteers Week 2014 - Profile of a Libraries ACT Volunteer

Thank you to all our fabulous library volunteers who help with many activities including Home Library Service deliveries, facilitating English conversation groups, sorting ephemera and photos at the ACT Heritage Library, and more.

There are many exciting ways to volunteer for Libraries ACT. Here is how one of our amazing volunteers enhances the services provided by Libraries ACT.

Rod Nicholas

Although born in Bendigo, I consider myself a Canberra boy. My family moved here in 1962—my father was the first newsreader for the then new TV station CTC 7—and I have not strayed since. In my first job after high school I was involved in promoting the ACT as a tourist designation, and almost 40 years later I retired after spending many years promoting the ACT Public Service as an accountable, effective and efficient public sector. I love our city and after marrying a beautiful local girl, have happily brought up a fine family here.

What to do as a retiree was never really a problem. I have been a volunteer Justice of the Peace for many years, and as President of the ACT JPs Association there were plenty of ways to keep busy. But I also knew there were many other ways I could ‘give something back to the community’ if I felt so inclined. I did, of course. For a start, I jumped at the opportunity to provide a regular JP service to the community at the Dickson Library. I found the staff there incredibly welcoming and enthusiastic, and after a chat or two found myself signing up to ‘Saturday Morning Stories and Singalong’. Would you like to lead our ‘Booktalking’ session, I was asked. Sure.

Volunteering is a genuinely life-affirming activity. For me, it is a chance to use my life skills and have some fun doing it. As a JP, I have touched many lives—yes, it’s only in a small way, but every little bit helps. As a library volunteer, I’ve had the chance to put my love of reading to good use; reading to children is great fun for a show-off like me, and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to talk about books to other keen readers. I enjoy the chance to offer help where it is needed, the thankyou from my JP clients, the smiles on the kids’ faces, sharing the love of books. Mostly, I enjoy knowing that I have ‘done some good’.

 If you’d like to become a volunteer, please get in touch. Your help as a volunteer could make a significant difference to someone’s life.