get involved in Ottawa

Create Your Volunteer Profile

Creating an account with Volunteer Ottawa allows you to apply to opportunities and helps member organizations find you. Volunteer accounts are always free.

Why volunteer?

You’re here because you’re interested in volunteering – but you may be surprised at all the benefits! Here are just a few: 

  • Learn what’s going on in your community, broaden your perspective, and meet new people 
  • Develop resume-relevant skills and experience at any age — as a student, a newcomer to Canada, or someone looking for a career change  
  • Put your established skills and experience to work to help others  
  • Boost your mental well-being with the social connections and sense of purpose that volunteering brings 
  • Contribute to a stronger society through active community engagement

Ready to get started?

Watch our video Ottawa’s Volunteer Connection to hear about how local volunteers found their opportunities through Volunteer Ottawa.

How does Volunteer Ottawa help me find opportunities to volunteer?

Watch our video or see the text explanation below!

Hundreds of charities, non-profits, and other organizations across Ottawa are looking for volunteers. They join Volunteer Ottawa to post their volunteer positions to the Search page on volunteerottawa.ca.

To find an opportunity to volunteer, visit the Search page on volunteerottawa.ca to see all currently available opportunities. You can use search, sort, and filter tools to help narrow down your search.

When you find a volunteer opportunity you are interested in, you use the "Apply to this position" button or follow the instructions in the Description of the opportunity to apply. Your application goes right to the organization that is recruiting volunteers.

After you apply, the organization will contact you back with next steps. This usually includes a screening interview and may include references or background checks.

What is volunteering?

At its heart, volunteering is about donating your time and talent to a good cause. There are two main types of volunteering: 

  • Formal Volunteering: volunteer work done for or on behalf of a nonprofit organization or charity. This can include anything from packing food at a food bank to donating time using your professional skills (sometimes known as “skilled volunteering”). 
  • Informal Volunteering: the help you provide directly to others, like shoveling snow, picking up groceries, or driving someone to an appointment. 

On the Volunteer Ottawa website, you will find opportunities for formal and skilled volunteering throughout the greater Ottawa region. You can filter your search to find the most relevant opportunities. 

Want to learn more about the value of volunteering? Check out this resource from Volunteer Canada. 

How do I apply to a volunteer opportunity?

Interested in applying for a volunteer opportunity on the Volunteer Ottawa website? It’s easy — create an account, find an opportunity that appeals to you, and hit “apply”! 

Organizations whose positions you apply to will be able to see your Volunteer Profile and Account Information as part of your application. Fill out as much of your Account Info and Volunteer Profile as possible to find better volunteering matches. 

What kind of information will I be asked for, and how is it used?

The information in your Account and Volunteer Profile streamlines your search by keeping all your relevant volunteer information attached to your account. 

Filling out both your Account Info and Volunteer Profile makes it easier to apply to opportunities and connect with the volunteering roles you’re interested in. Your Account Info holds your basic demographic information, while your Volunteer Profile includes your volunteering experience and preferences. Your profile information is only shared with charities and non-profits who are members in good standing of VO and only if you agree to share. You can access and update this information at any time through your account. Read VO’s privacy policy here. 

I have more questions...

Still have questions? Take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions page or contact us at: [email protected]

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I'm ready to volunteer!