Volunteering benefits everyone! Each week, more than 150 dedicated individuals volunteer for Friends. Check out current opportunities and return frequently for new ways to get involved!

Volunteer with Friends

CLICK HERE  to become a Friends volunteer. After you complete the form, you will receive a confirmation of your contact information and volunteer interests. You will start receiving emails about our current volunteers opportunities. Instructions on how you can sign up for volunteer activities will be included in the emails. Volunteer opportunities are described in more detail below. 

You can also sign up by contacting:
Donalda Watson-Walkinshaw, Manager
Membership & Volunteer Services 
Phone:  415.626.7512 ext.120
Email:  donalda.watson-walkinshaw@friendssfpl.org

Current Volunteer Opportunities

Readers Bookstore, Fort Mason Center

Readers Bookstore, Fort Mason Center.This is an on-going, weekly responsibility, six-month commitment strongly preferred, 18 years or over. Duties include operation of cash register, charge & debit card machines, receiving & directing phone calls, and greeting & engaging the public. Retail or customer service experience preferred but not required. A warm, personable, outgoing personality is a must!

Book Sales

  • STEPS SALES Every Wednesday (April through October 2013), Friends hosts weekly book sales on the steps of the Main Library (100 Larkin Street) in San Francisco. Volunteers are needed 10 AM-1 PM or 1-4 PM to help monitor tables and pack up unsold books. Each volunteer receives 5 free books for volunteering. Sales are canceled in the event of rain.
  • $1 SALE:  Held at our Donation Center in the Mission district, on the second Saturday of each month, rain or shine. We need help with set-up the Fridays before and with pack-up the days of the sales.
  • SPRING BOOK SALE (April 2015). Volunteers help with setting up tables and books, monitoring tables, cashiering, packing up and many other fun tasks.  

Donation Center

Volunteers sort and price the books used as inventory at our bookstores, Steps sales, $1.00 sales, and the Big Book Sale. This takes place at our Donation Center, 438 Treat Avenue. Volunteers are asked to do a 3+ hour shift anytime between 9 AM – 4 PM, Monday – Friday or 9AM - 2PM Saturday.

Ongoing Opportunities

spring book sale

In April 2015, we will need help with set up, break down, monitoring of tables, cashiering and other tasks. Each volunteer receives $5.00 in FREE books for volunteering.


We need Volunteers to help make our 50th a super success! During September 22-29, 2014 we need volunteers to help set up, break down, monitor tables, cashier, and other tasks.  Each volunteer receives $5.00 in FREE books for volunteering.

Donation Center

Volunteers are needed to help sort books Monday – Saturday at our Donation Center, located at 438 Treat Ave. This is a great opportunity for those interested in making a weekly volunteer commitment. For more information about our Donation Center, click here.

Readers Bookstore at the Main

Volunteers are needed to assist staff at our store at the Main Library. Located inside the Grove Street entrance, this bookstore operates during all Main Library open hours. Cash register training available. Volunteers are especially needed in the evenings or the weekends.

Book Buddies

Read to hospitalized children in San Francisco. Book Buddies are asked to make a commitment of two to three hours a week for a minimum of one year. Volunteers need to be 18 years old and must attend a one-hour orientation. Visit these web sites for more information about volunteering as a Book Buddy at local hospitals: UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital and Kaiser Permanente Medical Center. 

For more information, please contact Audrey Muntz at Audrey.Muntz@ucsfmedctr.org or Kai Forsley at kai.forsley@sfpl.org 
(415) 557-4251

Branch Library Book Pick-Ups

Volunteers, with their own vehicle, pick up donated books at neighborhood branch libraries and take them to our Book Donation Center. Must be able to pick up a 30 lb. box of books. This is a great way to get exercise and help the library! 

Office Assistance

Assist with mailings, data entry, and other tasks in our office at 710 Van Ness Avenue.

Special Events

Volunteer at Friends events! Some events include the San Francisco International Poetry Festival, branch library openings, SFPL Recognition Awards, Tricycle Music Festival, and author events.

For more information on volunteering with Friends of the SFPL, call Donalda Watson-Walkinshaw at 415.626.7512 ext.120 or fill out a volunteer application by clicking here.

Connecting Students and Community Through Service

Friends offers volunteer opportunities for Bay Area students 16 years or older. For a student volunteer application click here.

For information on book donations, click here.

Bookmark this page and check back for new ways to support the San Francisco Public Library!