Curtis Home Catalog Services Readers Corner Research Kids Teens

Passions and volunteering

September 30th, 2015


Volunteering should be fun and give you value. I don’t necessarily mean financial value, although studies have consistently shown that those who volunteer are more likely to get future employment. What volunteering does for someone is unique as the individual. For some, it is giving back to something that helped them. For others, it is a place they can gather with friends. For others still, volunteering is a time to use their skills outside their professional life. Whatever the reason, people should enjoy volunteering. Why else would you spend your precious free time giving of yourself without asking for anything in return?

I truly practice what I preach and when I am not working at the library I am volunteering on a Brunswick Town Council committee, volunteering with my dog at the Lewiston Public Library and serving as the Alumnae Admission Representative for Mount Holyoke College. I simply like volunteering. Each of those things bring me different value. I am interested in politics and sometimes consider running for an elected office, so volunteering on with the Town Council gives me valuable insight and experience. I love my dog and I love sharing him with others. Watching little ones relax while petting him and enjoying a book brings me immense joy. And volunteering for Mount Holyoke Admission is my way of giving back to an institution that shaped my life in ways I cannot begin to articulate.

Last night I had the pleasure of representing Mount Holyoke at the MidCoast College Fair. The combination of getting to share my experiences as well as talking with people about what Mount Holyoke can do for them was amazing. The value to me cannot be put into words. Their excitement and youth as they stand on the precipice of a new chapter in their life and remembering those feelings I had some 14 years ago. It was a wonderful night and I was honored to have the opportunity.

This walk down memory lane isn’t just me being excessively verbose and self-involved, it is meant to illustrate why someone volunteers. These are my passions. What are yours? What gets you up in the morning? What fills you with such joy you cannot help but smile? Do it! Get involved! Have a passion for books? We have 140,000 items to get excited about! Join us. Come be part of our community and find your passion.

New Volunteer Opportunities at Curtis: Skills-Based Volunteering

September 23rd, 2015


Skills-based volunteering is a buzz word in major cities. Basically, it is where a volunteer uses their specialized personal or professional skills to help an organization. A lawyer working pro-bono (for free) is skills-based volunteering. According to The HandsOn Network, skills-based volunteering is a strategic type of volunteerism that exponentially expands the impact of non profit by incorporating a whole range of skills that strengthen the operations and services of nonprofit organizations.

We have many volunteers who are skills-based volunteers without even knowing it. Did you know that we have a number of former teachers and librarians among our shelving ranks? They are using their professional skills to help us be a better place. They provide a unique insight and experience that make us all better as a result.

I am pleased and excited to announce that Curtis, in keeping with our nature to be ahead of the curve, have a number of skills-based volunteering opportunities available. We are looking for certain skill sets. You can be currently employed in the area, retired or engage in it as a hobby. However you come by your skills, we would love to chat with you about how your skills can strengthen the operation and services of Curtis.

Do you know how to sell an idea? Are you understand the Brunswick community and how to reach them? We are looking for someone with marketing and public relations experience. This volunteer would would with our Executive Director, Development and staff in planning and executing unique marketing and public relation campaigns that highlight programming and the library. This would be an on-going, as needed role.

Are you good with numbers? Do you enjoy statistics? Do trends and spreadsheets get you excited? We are looking for someone with statistics and reporting experience. The library keeps statistics on Curtis, the Town of Brunswick and the State of Maine. This information is found via research of various sources and is used in advocacy and grant writing. This would be a monthly role that could be completed in the comfort of your own home.

Finally, are you organized? Do you enjoy planning events? Do you take pleasure in a job well done after your party went off without a hitch? We are looking for two to three volunteers to serve on an Event Planning committee with Development Associate Joyce Schmitt from planning to executing events at Curtis. You will work closely with Joyce in all areas and you will also have front row seats for some of the hottest events at the library. This would be an on-going, as needed role that would require both activities within the library as well as outside the library.

If you are interested in one of these great opportunities or you have an idea for a skills-based volunteer opportunity you can bring to the table, let me know! We may have just the project to use your skills to make Curtis the best it can be. Email me at