LSU Libraries’ Head of Acquisitions Services Marsha Arrighi’s volunteer work is a topic in the December 2011 newsletter of the Library Support Staff Interests Round Table (LSSIRT) of the American Library Association.
The 2011 ALA Conference was hosted in New Orleans, and as usual, Marsha signed up for Volunteer Day, an annual activity at the ALA conferences, during which volunteers help with community projects (usually library-related). This past summer, Marsha and a friend, from the University of Arkansas, were assigned to the St. Bernard Project, an effort to help families still trying to rebuild after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.
Marsha and eighteen other ALA volunteers, some of whom had volunteered during two Volunteer Days in 2006, were split into two groups, and Marsha’s group helped a family still living in a FEMA trailer, while the other group took on a house for a man and his son who had been living in a pick-up truck since the hurricane. The groups scraped, swept, painted, and bagged garbage, and Marsha writes that while volunteering in a library would have been an easier assignment, she would not hesitate to accept another one like this. “It is hard to understand the suffering and turmoil these families went through during the actual storm and what they have had to put up with since,” Marsha writes.
Marsha has worked in the LSU Libraries for thirty-one years and is currently the Head of Acquisitions Services.