Volunteer Impact: Teen Volunteers Light Up J.D. Shatford Memorial Public Library

This Volunteer Appreciation Week, we highlight a group of dedicated teen volunteers at  J.D. Shatford Memorial Public Library. These young locals aren’t just lending a hand, they’re impacting their community and making a difference.

"Our library is a very central part of the community here in Hubbards," says Claire Funk, the programming specialist at J.D. Shatford Memorial Public Library, noting the branch is where the community comes together, creating a sense of unity in a town where everyone knows your name.

Meet The Volunteers

So, what are the names of some of our superstar volunteers, and how did they start their volunteer journeys?

Mikayla, a high school student with a heart in music and art, found a soothing rhythm in the library and started volunteering because she loves spaces like the library.

“I started volunteering at the library because I’ve always liked to read, and I like calm, quiet atmospheres,” says Mikayla.

Siara, who enjoys spending time with friends and family in the community, found her spark in the library after a friend introduced her to volunteering.

“It feels great to give back to the community and be a part of it somehow,” says Siara.

Audrey, a student council co-president at her high school, has always been community-minded and was happy to give back to a place that has always been special to her.

"I've been going to this library since before I could walk and have always loved it,” says Aubrey.

Meanwhile, Addie, already making a difference through her local Pathfinders chapter, was drawn to volunteering after witnessing the impact volunteers were making.

"I’ve just seen people helping out here, and I just wanted to be a part of it,” says Addie

 Volunteers at Work

J.D. Shatford Memorial Public Library teen volunteers give about an hour each week to a wide array of activities that significantly contribute to the library's vibrant atmosphere and the community's well-being.

"They help out with all sorts of things and make programs much more straightforward,” says Claire. “They're a very positive part of our branch life here."

Each week, the young volunteers help to prepare crafts that spark the imaginations of young visitors, and support community programs like the annual pumpkin smash and running engaging activities for children and families at the Hubbards’ Farmers Market during the warmer months.

Fun Times

The teen volunteers don't just work hard—they have a blast doing it! Every day brings a new adventure and a chance to make someone's day a little brighter, and it’s definitely made an impact on both the community and the volunteers themselves, who have many moments to cherish.

Mikayla fondly says that breaking out of her shell by chatting with visitors of all generations has been major for building her conversational skills. ‘It was really cool to talk with someone older. Volunteering has helped my confidence,” she says.

For Audrey, it's all about the bubbles and the laughs they bring at the Hubbards Farmers Market. "I always love the programs we do with kids at the Farmers’ Market on Saturday morning, especially with bubbles!" she shares.

Siara found her volunteer groove in an unexpected place: a pumpkin-smashing bash. “My favourite experience volunteering at the library was helping out with the pumpkin smashing program,” she says.

And Addie? She found joy in the competitive spirit of a super sweet take on bingo, recalling, "One of my favourite memories while volunteering is probably Chocolate Bar Bingo. It was just so fun to be able to bring joy to the people playing."

A Big Thank You

As we reflect on the incredible journey of our teen volunteers at the J.D. Shatford Memorial Public Library, Claire extends a heartfelt message of gratitude:

“Thank you for all the things you do, for having such a great attitude, and for all you bring to the library community."

Inspired to Make a Difference?

As we celebrate the work and spirit of our teen volunteers, we also extend an invitation to future teen volunteers looking for a way to make a difference, learn new skills, and be part of a community that values growth and giving back.

As Addie (who is seriously considering a career as a librarian following her experience) would say, “DO IT! It’s an amazing environment and just such an amazing experience."

Ready to contribute to our vibrant community? Discover the joy of volunteering with us and become part of the Halifax Public Libraries family. Learn more and get involved here, opens a new window.

In celebrating Volunteer Appreciation Week, we're reminded of the transformative power of volunteerism, the joy of shared experiences, and the lasting impact of genuine connections. To all our volunteers, thank you for making a difference every day.