Teen summer volunteers

As we approach the midway point of the library’s summer reading programs, participants in our Teen Summer Volunteer Program (TSV) are kicking it into high gear. Our 80+ volunteers are divided into three cohorts (Literacy Advocate, Maker Assistant and Program Intern) that explore various elements of (behind-the-scenes) library life. They dedicate several hours of their summer break to the library and our community. And wonderfully, many TSV participants continue their involvement with the library beyond one summer – by volunteering year after year, joining our Teen Advisory Board, or collaborating with the library on programs and events they’ve created themselves. 

As content creators, our TSV Literacy Advocates use and develop marketing and social media skills to share their love and excitement for books and the library. Next time you are in the Teen Center, look out for shelf-talkers they’ve created to inspire the next addition to your TBR pile. Follow @ppl.teens on Instagram and TikTok for creative stories, posts, and videos highlighting recent reads and old favorites, and pull up the Spotify account for playlists galore curated to capture the vibes and themes of books.

With a focus on services and space, TSV Maker Assistants use their creativity and crafty skills to support the library. With their assistance, we’ll have a robust array of our very popular kids and teen Take and Make kits for this summer and beyond. Other creative projects include making seasonal decorations and helping with interactive bulletin boards to make the Teen Center a welcoming, fun space for their peers.

A lot goes into public programming at the library, and the TSV Program Interns get a glimpse of it through their week-long event planning “camps.” Over the course of a week and with library staff guidance, they’ll plan and make all the crafts, activities, games, and decorations for a children’s program they’ll present. The first TSV-produced program, a Percy Jackson Party, takes place this Friday, with a Pokémon Party on July 26 and a Bluey Party on August 9 to follow.

Summer’s all hands on deck in Youth Services, and we greatly appreciate our young volunteers’ helping hands!

Photos by Princeton Public Library’s Youth Services.

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