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Volunteer

Solidarity Cards for Incarcerated Teens

In collaboration with organization Circles & Ciphers (@circles_ciphers), join us online to write letters of encouragement to incarcerated young people in Cook County Juvenile Detention Center. The organization meets one Saturday a month for two hours to let our most isolated youth know that they are not forgotten. Email Miss Rachel at rcolias@nileslibrary.org and she'll help you register as days and times are announced. Teens will receive 2 volunteer hours for every event they attend.

 

Garden Helpers

May - November
Grades 7-12
Help us tend our window well garden by watering throughout the growing season. Email teen@nileslibrary.org for more information and to set up an orientation session. Earn 30-minutes of volunteer service for each watering shift. Shifts can be scheduled Monday-Saturday at a time that is convenient for you.

 

Liberation Library

Liberation Library needs bookmarks! Every book they send to youth in prison includes a personalized bookmark. Make bookmarks at home and send them to:

Liberation Library
c/o In These Times
2040 Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 606047

Bookmarks must not include stickers, tape, or glue. Bookmarks can be made using pens, pencils, crayons, markers and the like. Email us at teen@nileslibrary.org with pictures of the bookmarks you make and the date you mailed them. Receive 2 hours of volunteer service credit for every 4 bookmarks you make.

The organization's mission: Liberation Library provides books to youth in prison to encourage imagination, self-determination and connection to outside worlds of their choosing. We believe access to book sis a right, not a privilege. We believe books and relationships empower young people to change the criminal justice system.

 

Lincoln Reading Club

Earn volunteer hours reading and discussing books from the Lincoln Award list - Illinois' teen choice book award. Registrants will be emailed a link to an online poll to vote on which book to read each month. Ms. Donna will email everyone information about what we'll be reading. Participants read separately and then meet online to discuss whether the book is award-worthy. Attending and participating in a club meeting will earn each teen 3 volunteer hours (2 hours for reading, and 1 hour for attending). Register here.

 

Social Justice Reading Club

Earn volunteer hours reading about and discussing social justice issues. Social justice issues can be complicated and deeply personal. They impact our laws and often determine our sense of public safety and belonging. Understanding the history and current state of oppression requires a commitment to learning and unpacking our own biases requires the desire to do better. Joining this club means you’re dedicated to both of these actions. Each month we’ll read a fiction book, nonfiction book, or collection of online resources about a social justice issue separately and then meet online to discuss it together. Register here and Ms. Rachel will email you information regarding what you should read before our monthly meeting and help you check out whatever materials you need. She will also email everyone a link to the Zoom meeting before the scheduled date. Attending and participating in a club meeting will earn each teen 3 volunteer hours (2 hours for reading, and 1 hour for attending). Let’s read in solidarity and imagine the world we want to build together.

 

Teen Advisory Board

Want the chance to help shape services for teens at the Library? Come join a friendly group who meet the last Saturday of the month year-round. Help out with special projects, plan programs and advocate for teens in the community. All meetings are currently taking place virtually using zoom. Click here to register for our next meeting.

 

Teens Making History

Join Miss Rachel online each month to learn about an event in history and discuss how it connects to what’s happening now. Registrants will receive an email with reading materials concerning the historical event they’ll be discussing that month and earn 2 volunteer hours for participating in the program. Register for the next session.

 

Write for our Blog

Write for our Library Buzz Blog! Earn 1 hour of volunteer service for each blog post you write. Contact Teen Librarians Donna and Rachel at 847-663-6490 or teen@nileslibrary.org for more information.

 

For Active Volunteers

Active Teen Volunteers may sign into VicNet here to view your hours and sign up for shifts!

For more information about Teen Volunteering, please contact your Teen Services staff at teen@nileslibrary.org.

 

Sign Up To Get Updates on Teen Volunteer Opportunities

Teens in grade 7-12 who would like to help out with programs or keep the Teen Underground neat 'n tidy once we re-open to patrons, please fill out this form. Contact Teen Librarians Donna and Rachel at 847-663-6490 or teen@nileslibrary.org for more information.