Kath, Library Assistant

Kath tells us about her career as a Library Assistant at Southwater Library.

Tell us a bit about yourself

Hi I’m Kath. I’m a Library Assistant at Southwater Library which is a busy small library offering extended opening hours for its size. I live in Southwater and I was a library customer before being a volunteer and now a member of staff for the last eight years.

What inspired you to become a Library Assistant?

While my son was growing up, I had paid work at a school-based Kids Club. I wanted to make the change back to a public-facing customer service role. I had been volunteering at the library for a year or two when the paid position was advertised. I wasn’t quite ready to make the change, but my son was starting secondary school and it seemed an opportune time for change for me too.

Why did you choose to work for West Sussex?

I enjoyed my volunteering and I found the environment and the people very friendly and easy to work with. Over the years, I have worked on a voluntary basis quite regularly as I have a chronic medical condition and I have not always been able to work on a paid basis.

What is the best thing about being a Library Assistant at West Sussex?

The best thing about being a Library Assistant at Southwater is that no day is the same, the work is varied and there is a real community feel. We have lots of regular customers who are very friendly and appreciate the service that we give them.

What do you particularly enjoy about working in the Library Services team?

I like the variety and it is lovely to be able to help people in different ways. I particularly enjoy trying to do my utmost to help someone. We try and help people find out information, use our computers and also find the right book.

How does West Sussex support you to develop and progress?

I am supported by the other two staff and our volunteers at Southwater. We also have support from Horsham Library and our line manager. West Sussex has a large amount of online training and support which we have access too.

What do you particularly enjoy about working in the Library Services team?

Our job is particularly enjoyable over the summer holidays when we run the Summer Reading Challenge. It is great to see the children enjoying reading and seeing them progress over the years.

What would you say are the challenges of being a Library Assistant?

It can be challenging when lone working, thinking on your feet and managing a queue.

What is your favourite book?

My favourite book is The Hobbit. I remember being introduced to it at primary school by our English teacher.

What would you say to somebody considering joining us?

I would say, if you want to enjoy a job dealing with all ages and varied subject matter as part of a friendly team, then look for work within West Sussex Libraries.

Last updated:
27 June 2023
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