by Heidi Riley
The annual UPEI Volunteer Fair held in September featured local organizations in need of volunteers. Volunteering is a wonderful way to give back to your community, meet new people, and learn new skills.
“Volunteering has helped me in so many ways,” says Jenna Gaudet, of UPEI’s Experiential Education Office. “It has helped me expand my network of friends and professional connections, and I have travelled in Canada and the US through volunteer experiences. I learned a lot about myself and what I enjoy doing, which helped me in the world of work. I helped my community in various ways, and I gained a lot of different skills.
“The best way to start getting experience to put on your resumé is to volunteer. It does not have to be a huge time commitment – it could be just one or two hours a week.
“The Experiential Education Office can help UPEI students write about their volunteer experience in a way that communicates those skills to the employer as you apply for work.”
For a complete description of volunteer opportunities featured at the virtual fair, visit www.upei.ca/exed/students/volunteering
Organizations at the fair looking for volunteers
Upper Room Food Bank Hospitality Ministry
There are future opportunities at the food bank, soup kitchen, events, warehouse, and/or administration. Current opportunities are limited due to COVID-19, but they are building a volunteer email list.
To volunteer, email [email protected] to book an appointment to meet with the event coordinator Nicole or call 902-892-7092.
UPEI Student Union
There are volunteer opportunities to serve on various committees such as New Initiatives & Future Directions, Funding Committee, Budget Committee, UPEISU Street Team, UPEISU Advocacy Team, and Marketing & Communications Committee.
You can also volunteer to assist the VPs with their different portfolios during events, campaigns, and consultations.
This bilingual youth volunteer organization funded by Canada Service Corps creates short and long-term opportunities for youth to find a volunteer experience in Canada or abroad and engage with their communities. During the pandemic, travel opportunities are limited.
There are also social entrepreneurship volunteer opportunities. Grants are available to develop your own social impact project to meet a community need and to be mentored by the organization. The project is for participants ages 15 to 30.
For more information, contact Kelsey Kliparchuk, Outreach and Development Officer, at [email protected] Visit www.cj.qc.ca/en/more-opportunities/become-a-volunteer/
Beach Grove Home and Prince Edward Home
Volunteers are needed to engage with residents through activities such as playing games, reading, transporting them, taking them on outings, hair styling, playing cards, singing, crafts, and more. Volunteers can volunteer any day of the week between the hours of 8 am and 9 pm.
To volunteer, visit www.princeedwardisland.ca/en/information/health-pei/prince-edward-home
Scroll down to Can I Volunteer? and click Apply online
A criminal record check and vulnerable sector check are required.
For more information, call Cheryl Young at 902-368-5792.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of PEI
There is a need for Big Brothers & Big Sisters to be matched with youth. In the near future there may also be a volunteer position for programs such as Go Girls, Game On, Launch Your Life Leaders, and In-School Mentors.
To start the volunteer process, visit the website and complete an application form. All volunteers will have two in-person interviews and provide three references and must obtain a criminal record check and a vulnerable sector check.
For more information, call Myron Yates at 902-368-7760, or email [email protected]
Canadian Mental Health Association
CMHA is looking for volunteers to deliver a mental health program called I’m Thumbody to grade 3 classes. The program consists of two one-hour sessions given a week apart. All sessions are delivered during school hours and students can choose which schools fit their schedule.
To start the volunteer process, two references and a criminal record check are required. Once approved, volunteers attend a three-hour training session.
For more information, email Sarah MacEachern at [email protected]
Community Museums Association of PEI
Volunteer positions range from gardener to exhibit designer, research assistant, social media, administration, collections assistant, program developer, and more.
To volunteer, visit www.museumspei.ca. Under Join the community, click volunteer positions. Apply by sending a letter of introduction and a resumé to the email address listed.
For more information, contact Johanne Vigneault at [email protected].
Girl Guides of Canada, PEI
They are looking for leaders, non-member volunteers, and guest speakers to work with girls from 5 to 18 in different units. Meetings are currently outdoors in person and virtual. Meetings are 1 1/2 hours per week plus some planning prep time (30 minutes per week).
To be a leader, you need to go through a screening process – interview, references, and criminal record check.
For more information, contact Membership Adviser Aly Brown at
[email protected] or PEI Area Commissioner Amy Doyle at
Let’s Talk Science (LTS)
Volunteers engage youth and deliver a wide variety of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learning experiences in school and community settings.
Because of COVID-19, volunteers will be hosting activities online.
Volunteers complete a virtual volunteer training session and register as a volunteer on the LTS website portal. Depending on the type of activity (i.e., mentoring), a volunteer may need to complete a criminal record check. All volunteers must complete a registration form, training, and a meeting (virtually) with a coordinator before volunteering on their own.
For more information, contact Kimberly Wishart Chu Foon, Coordinator, at [email protected]
PEI Association for Community Living
Volunteers are needed to provide care for individuals with intellectual disabilities. The PEIACL is often contacted by Island families to identify and recruit Respite Workers for individuals in need of support. PEIACL connect care providers to these individuals for meaningful and rewarding employment.
The volunteer process starts with an interview to assess the volunteer’s abilities to provide support for individuals with intellectual disabilities. This process also allows PEIACL to understand which family may be the best fit for the volunteer. The final step is to connect with the matched family for their approval before beginning.
Volunteers must be at least 18 years of age, be able to obtain a clear Vulnerable Sector Check, and abide by the PEIACL Confidentiality Agreement.
For more information, contact Joseph Dery, Support Match Coordinator, at 902-388-5432 or [email protected].
St. John Ambulance
St. John Ambulance is looking for Volunteer Medical Responders. Trained volunteers attend public events (sporting, cultural, musical, etc.) to provide basic and advanced care when emergencies occur. They are first on scene in the critical minutes until medical assistance arrives.
To become a Volunteer Medical Responder, you will need:
- SJA information and application package with three references
- Criminal record & vulnerable sector check
- Interview with someone on the Community Services team
- Approval from the VMR division leader
- Attendance at the next meeting night to meet the team
- Minimum Standard First Aid training provided before performing duties.
They are also looking for volunteers for their Therapy Dog Program. This is a program where people interested need to own a dog or know someone with a dog they are comfortable with handling/taking places. The handler and dog are a therapy team who visit facilities SJA is approved to be in and interact with clients/employees/visitors, for example libraries, schools, universities, airports, nursing homes, and hospitals.
For more information, contact Jazlyn MacLeod at 902-370-3670 or [email protected]
The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award-Canada-Prince Edward Island
The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is a global non-formal education framework which challenges young people to discover their potential and find their purpose, passion, and place in the world.
Its mission in Canada is to give every young Canadian aged 14 to 24 a supportive self-development tool that deepens awareness, builds confidence, broadens skills, and impels them into experiences that further their development as active, responsible citizens.
Currently, the Award in PEI is looking for under 30 leaders to volunteer approximately four hours per week, virtually. Training is offered through the online learning hub. A criminal record check is required.
For additional information, contact Executive Director Janet Rogers at [email protected]
Learning Disabilities Association of PEI (LDA)
Volunteers receive requests for tutoring, gauge whether LDA is the appropriate service, liaise between the student family and tutor to arrange a schedule, send paperwork and maintain a register of tutoring to follow up with further contracts through the year.
There are also opportunities to do research, policy writing, or create videos. This can be done as a mix of in-person and online.
Volunteers must submit their resumé and have a criminal record check.
For more information, contact Martin Dutton at [email protected]
Rising Youth Community Service Grants program
Rising Youth offers opportunities for people between 15 and 30 to apply for a grant to create community volunteer projects such as hosting an event or putting together care packages for people, or any project that helps the community.
For more information, visit www.risingyouth.ca
Rotaract Club of UPEI
This is a community service-based organization where UPEI students volunteer, give back to the community and raise money for projects. Rotaract is the youth wing of Rotary Club and is geared to people ages 18 to 29 around the world.
For more information, visit www.facebook.com/groups/RotaractUPEI
World University Services of Canada (WUSC)
World University Services of Canada (WUSC) is a non-profit organization with locations on campuses across Canada. It works with student refugees to provide tutoring and helps student refugees settle in Canada.
For more information, visit www.wusc.ca