Outreach Services takes the library experience to those in our community who might not have access to the library. Our outreach opportunities utilize library volunteers and our outreach programs provide staff the ability to take programming beyond the walls of the Fayetteville Public Library.



These programs are made possible by our wonderful volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering for one of these programs, please contact Carlye Dennis at cdennis@faylib.org or (479) 856-7104.

Books for Borrowing

Books for Borrowing provides the children at Ellen Smith and Ivory Conley Head Start an opportunity to check out their own books. Both locations have a Books for Borrowing bookcase with a collection of books that can be checked out. The child writes their name on the card located inside the book, and takes it home to read. When they’re finished, they can return it to the Books for Borrowing bookcase. The goal is to give children who may not be able to visit the library, the opportunity of a library experience.  

As a Books for Borrowing volunteer, you will visit both Head Start centers every two to three months, at a time that is convenient for you, to refresh the books available for checkout, and then capture how many books circulated.

Lending Hands

Are you unable to visit the library due to illness or disability? The Lending Hands service provides you with a volunteer who will personally deliver library materials to you. Lending Hands is a free service and there is no age requirement for the service. You must, however, reside within the city limits of Fayetteville to be eligible for Lending Hands.

As a Lending Hands volunteer you will visit the library once or twice a month, depending upon the Lending Hands participant’s needs and your availability, to pick up library materials and deliver them to your Lending Hands participant.  

Reading Roadshow and Letter of the Week

Reading Roadshow provides a once per month theme-based storytime to pre-K classrooms in Fayetteville. Each monthly storytime is provided by FPL volunteers, and includes themed books, a puppet, finger plays, and music, and introduces children to a literary experience. Reading Roadshow visits all Fayetteville non-profit daycare centers and pre-K classes.

As a Reading Roadshow volunteer you get to select the books you want to read and whether or not you include finger-plays, songs, or music. You get to make the storytime your own, and the kids will provide the smiles and hugs!

Letter of the Week provides additional kindergarten readiness tutoring to children at Ellen Smith Head Start. Letter of the Week is led by an FPL volunteer, who visits the classroom weekly with a letter-themed bag full of tactile objects, finger plays and collaborative worksheets to be completed together during the visit.

Reading Roadshow and Letter of the Week foster early literary skills for pre-K children.

Sit, Stay, Read!

Sit, Stay, Read! is a literacy-based program targeting emerging or struggling readers. This program is offered throughout the Fayetteville Public School system, and periodically in the library. Readers are paired with a library volunteer and their certified therapy dog for a reading session that encourages confidence in reading aloud. Readers complete one 30 minute reading session each week for six weeks. After completion of the program, participants are awarded with a Sit, Stay, Read! T-shirt, acknowledging their hard work and dedication to improving their reading skills.

As a Sit, Stay, Read! volunteer, you and your furry friend will visit a school classroom or the library for a 30 minute storytime for six weeks. If you have certified therapy dog and you’re interested in volunteering for Sit, Stay, Read! complete this application to become a volunteer!

Words on Wheels

Words on Wheels provides weekly storytimes to aging adults who have early onset dementia and/or alzheimers. Storytimes are led by library volunteers who read short stories and sing songs with residents at three assisted living facilities in Fayetteville – Memory Care at Brookstone, Clarity Pointe, and Morningside Assisted Living.

As a Words on Wheels volunteer, you will be assigned a reading location to provide a once per month storytime to aging adults. Book selections are curated by our reference librarians and are available for pick up anytime during the month. We even have volunteers that select their own titles. Books may be picked up and returned anytime during the month.  


Books and Bites

Books and Bites is a grant funded program that targets low income, at-risk, food-insecure children ages kindergarten to 4th grade. They are brought to the Fayetteville Public Library to read, learn, eat and grow in a safe environment. Each child participates in a learning activity designed to promote literacy and encourage a healthy lifestyle. The library and mentors provide a positive and safe atmosphere, and following each educational and entertaining program, campers receive a reusable tote bag to take home, filled with fresh produce, recipes, food resources, library resources and new books.

Books and Bites partners include Fayetteville Public Library, Feed Communities, Cobblestone Farm, First Security Bank, LifeSource International, Yvonne Richardson Center, and Asbell Elementary.

Asbell Elementary was added as a program location in 2016. Books and Bites is completed at the school itself, in one day, and provides an educational component for each elementary classroom, followed by a lively, group assembly to finish out the day’s events.

Cat Tales: The Kitty Literacy Project

Kitties and reading? Yes, please. Program participants of Cat Tales: The Kitty Literacy Project visit the Fayetteville Animal Shelter once a week to read to a cat or kitten for 30 minutes. At the end of the sixth session, program participants graduate from the program and are awarded a special Cat-Tales T-shirt and a certificate that acknowledges their commitment to improving their reading skills and their volunteerism supporting shelter cats.

Read more about the program’s beginnings from Alyson Low, Children’s Librarian and program coordinator:

“We became aware of a program at an animal shelter in Berks County, Pennsylvania, which connects kids, shelter cats, and books. Given the resounding success we’ve had with Sit, Stay, Read, it was an easy, exciting decision to establish a similar activity involving cats here in Fayetteville. We believe both cats and dogs can provide the kids with a comforting audience and a positive presence; their funny, affectionate nature relaxes the kiddos and makes reading a treat. This program has the added purpose of socializing the shelter cats, giving them a better chance of being adopted. We approached Fayetteville Animal Services with the proposal of a partnership, and they enthusiastically agreed. In the time Cat Tales has been in existence, it’s been our delight to witness the cats clearly respond to the one-on-one attention; some sit in the kids’ laps or right next to them; some perch on a nearby window ledge, seemingly listening to every word the child reads. It’s a truly beneficial program for all of the participants – two-legged and four-legged - involved.”


Through a partnership with Fayetteville Public School system and the Fayetteville Public Library, all Fayetteville students are provided an FPL I-Card or ”Internet Only” library card, regardless of previous fines or inability to visit the library in person.  The FPL I-card gives Fayetteville students access to all library eResouces, which include online tutoring, homework help, language instruction, access to research databases, as well as free downloadable ebooks, magazines, and music.

The I-Card project began in October 2011 as a partnership with Owl Creek School as part of an afterschool program that gave students access to the library’s online homework resources. The success of the card in that pilot program lead principal Kristena Champion Scott, to ask if the cards could be issued to all of the Owl Creek students in the spring of 2012. Utilization of the cards by students and teachers drew attention of the Fayetteville Schools’ superintendent, and she and FPL Executive Director David Johnson brought together IT departments to determine a plan to rollout “Internet Only” cards to the entire FPS student population in the fall of 2013.

Since 2013, FPL has provided all Fayetteville students I-Cards. In 2015, I-Cards were also provided to Fayetteville private and charter schools.  Through this project, more than 10,000 students have been given access to online and library resources each year.


The Storytellers writing class provides residents at BrookStone Assisted Living with the opportunity to record their experiences, whether for the purpose of personal reflection or for sharing with loved ones. The writing workshop meets every other week for an hour. The authors are given a prompt designed to narrow their focus on a particular time or experience in their lives, or they may write on a topic of their choosing if they are inspired to do so. The atmosphere is very relaxed. Feedback is not in the form of corrections, but in singling out successes. The library provides composition books the residents are encouraged to keep and use in between sessions. Periodically, their work will be collected and published in a booklet.

Read more about the program’s purpose from Alyson Low, Children’s Librarian and program coordinator:

“Creative writing programs for senior citizens in assisted living and retirement facilities can impact participants in a multitude of positive ways, including social, intellectual, and emotional stimulation, as well as finding their voice for the first time, again, or perhaps inventing a new one.”