Libraries and NGOs working together in Russia
Results from a poll conducted by the Association of Volunteer Centres (AVC) have shown that libraries and volunteers can work together effectively.
Modern libraries are trying to shake off their traditional image as reading rooms by holding more and more events, seminars and training courses within their own four walls.
The AVC and Russian State Library for Young Adults undertook an analysis of joint collaboration between libraries and NGOs, particularly with volunteers, which involved 17 volunteer centres and 35 libraries. According to the research, the vast majority of library staff (91.7%) were willing to take part in federal and regional events. Just over a half of respondents (51.4%) are able to provide facilities for volunteer training. Almost all responses from library staff (94.3%) said that volunteers come along to nearly all of their events.
For their part, volunteer centres identified their most important forms of interaction with libraries; joint participation in events (94.1%), educational activities run by volunteers for library visitors (76.5%). In the opinion of the centres, providing library facilities for volunteer training is an important element of joint cooperation (23.5%).
According to AVC’s website, volunteer organisations are prepared to offer their own programme of activities to libraries including providing audio books for partially sighted people, hosting conferences and fora for young scientists, organising events aimed at promoting the virtues of book reading, undertaking thematic book-crossing, as well as creating and undertaking literature searches for library visitors.