Volunteer

Become a Depot Volunteer!

The Depot relies on hundreds of volunteers to run its diverse programming. Whether you want to prep and cook food, to distribute groceries as part of our emergency food basket program, or to work in one of our gardens, the Depot offers plenty of volunteering opportunities! Below, you will find a list of our volunteer positions. Before you start volunteering with us, we ask that you attend an information session for new volunteers. These sessions take place once or twice per month, depending on demand and availability of volunteer shifts.

To sign up for an information session for new volunteers, please complete this short form.

If you’re a student looking to complete CSP hours, please email our volunteer coordinator directly.

 

Food Prep and Cooking

Every Tuesday and Friday, the Depot runs a food distribution program that provides emergency food baskets and free meals for community members. During our Tuesday, Thursday and Friday kitchen shifts, volunteers prepare and serve free healthy and delicious meals. As a kitchen volunteer, you can expect to partake in all aspects of food-making (prepping, serving, washing dishes, and more), and you should be prepared to spend most of the shift on your feet. You do not need any previous kitchen experience to become a kitchen volunteer, just an interest in food-making and a desire to support the Depot’s food programming!

Shifts:

Tuesdays 1pm-4pm / 4pm-7:30pm

Thursdays 10am-1pm / 1pm-4pm 

Fridays 9am-12pm / 12pm-3pm 

 

Distribution

Every Tuesday and Friday, the Depot runs a food distribution program that provides emergency food baskets and free meals for community members. Distribution volunteers assist program participants to choose products for their baskets, and answer any questions they might have about the different food items on display. 

Shifts:

Tuesdays 1:45pm-4:30pm / 4:30pm-7:15pm 

Fridays 9:45am-12pm / 12pm-2:15pm 

 

Intake and Registration

Intake and Registration volunteers are responsible for finding program participants’ files in our computer database, registering emergency food baskets, and checking community members' eligibility for food baskets. Experienced registration volunteers are also tasked with opening files for new program participants and providing information about additional resources. Registration volunteers should be comfortable communicating in English and French, enjoy working with the public, and have basic computer skills. 

Tuesdays 1:45pm-4:30pm / 4:30pm-7pm

Fridays 9:45am-12pm / 12pm-2pm

 

Information and Referral

The role of the information and referral volunteer is to provide participants with information during our distribution hours. Volunteers staff the Depot’s information and referral counter and are responsible for giving verbal information regarding additional resources and social services, guiding participants to pertinent written information, following up on previous referrals, promoting upcoming Depot and community events, and supporting people through listening. Information and referral volunteers should be comfortable communicating in English and French and have excellent listening and interpersonal skills. Please note that a 6-month time commitment is required.  

Shifts:

Tuesdays 1:45pm-4:30pm / 4:30pm-7pm

Fridays 9:45am-1pm

 

Market

The Depot’s year-round Good Food Market takes place every Friday and sells fresh and affordable (and, when possible, local and organic) fruits and vegetables, dairy products and eggs, as well as baked goods and snacks made here at the Depot! Market volunteers are responsible for setting up and taking down the market, arranging, restocking and portioning the produce, answering customers’ questions, and serving food at the café.

Shifts:

Fridays 12:30pm-3:30pm / 3:30pm-6:30pm

 

Gardening

The Depot has two production gardens where it grows food for its free meal program and community picnics. Production garden volunteers learn and perform ecological gardening techniques (planting, weeding, fertilization, pruning, harvesting, etc.), and help manage the on-site compost system. Please note that volunteers help grow and harvest the produce, but do not get a share. Production garden volunteers should be able to perform mild and medium-intensity physical tasks outdoors, including bending, carrying heavy things, using tools, etc. 

Shifts:

Thursdays (starting May 5) 4pm-6pm 

 

Cooking Workshops

The Depot offers after-school nutrition workshops where kids and teens prepare their own lunches, and several community kitchens where participants prepare and share a meal together. Volunteers help ensure a safe, clean and welcoming atmosphere during the workshops. They also help to ensure that the workshops run smoothly by setting up, cleaning up, and sharing knowledge with the participants during the workshops.

Shifts:

With children: Mondays to Fridays 3:30pm-6:30pm

With teens: Tuesdays to Thursdays 3:15pm-6:30pm

With adults & families: Occasional weekdays and Saturdays

 

Children’s Animation (off-site)

The Depot offers activities for children during many of its programs so that all members of the family can participate together. Children’s animation volunteers help animate games and activities for children in a safe and creative environment. The age and number of children during each workshop can vary, as well as the locations of the workshops. If you’re creative and enthusiastic and enjoy working with kids, this is an excellent volunteering opportunity!

Shifts:

Fridays 10:30am-2:30pm

Occasional Saturdays 10:30am-2:30pm / 3:30pm-7:30pm 

 

Reception 

Reception volunteers are responsible for answering phone and in-person inquiries about the Depot and its different programs, entering and retrieving data, translating short documents, and more! If you’re bilingual and have some administrative experience and a pleasant disposition, this could be a perfect volunteering opportunity for you!

 

Driving

If you have access to a car and a valid driver’s license, you can volunteer to collect off-site donations, deliver food baskets to program participants’ homes, and more! Driving is an excellent opportunity if you’re interested in occasional volunteering with a flexible schedule.   

 

One-time volunteering opportunities

Looking to volunteer just one time? We have one-time volunteering opportunities throughout the year, but in particular during November and December. One-time volunteering opportunities include sorting food during our annual Food Drive, handing out flyers that promote our market, participating in our annual Halloween Thriller dance, helping out at events, and more. Email our volunteer coordinator if you’re looking for a one-time volunteering opportunity. 

 

Group volunteering

We welcome groups ranging from 4 to 10 volunteers. We can accommodate larger groups in November and December, and during the rest of the year in preparation for a special project or event. Volunteer groups can expect to sort and portion food donations, assist with our food distribution services, prepare meals and baked goods for our community meal program, and more. For more information about group volunteering, please email our volunteer coordinator.