Volunteers at Planned Parenthood Ottawa

If you are committed to a pro-choice, rainbow-positive, sex-positive, and non-judgmental philosophy you will enjoy being a volunteer at PPO. We will provide you with the opportunity to learn about sexual and reproductive health, participate in our numerous programs, be active in the community, and meet a fantastic group of volunteers and staff who are committed to making healthy sexuality a reality for everyone in the Ottawa community.

Amazing volunteers contribute to all levels of PPO’s work, including Board of Directors, sexual health counseling, community education workshops and kiosks, special event management, condom distribution, communications, office support, email and telephone support and referrals, fundraising, etc.

If you have an expertise and/or energy and time that you would like to contribute to improving sexual health services, please contact our Options Coordinator to discuss ways you can help or get more information on future training opportunities. We will verify references and conduct a police record check.

All new volunteers are required to attend our Orientation, offered once a year. We ask for a minimum commitment of 8 hours a month for at least one year from new volunteers. For more information, please contact our Options Coordinator at (613) 226-3234 dial 1 or email to options@ppottawa.ca.


What is the process to become a volunteer?

Typically to start the volunteer application process you will often be asked to fill out an application form. When we are recruiting new volunteers the form will be available here. If the form is not available, please watch our social media pages (Facebook or Twitter) and we will post when the application becomes available.

If we feel your individual skills, beliefs, and values align with our work, we will contact you for an interview. Typically when becoming a volunteer with Planned Parenthood Ottawa (PPO), you will be interviewed either individually or in a group setting. During individual interviews, you will often meet two of our staff members and be asked some questions about your skills, beliefs, and values.

In group settings, we try our very best to accommodate those who are quiet or introverted. In group interviews, you will often meet two or more staff members who will facilitate a few activities with you in order to gauge your skills, beliefs, and values. If you demonstrate that your individual skills, beliefs, and values still align with our work, we will contact you to take our volunteer training.

What is the volunteer training like?

Our training is extensive as is our application process. Our initial training is typically 25-30 hours total happening over 4-5 weekend days or 8-10 evening sessions. In the training, you will meet the other volunteers and learn about a variety of topics. Our training topics typically include: how oppression impacts sexual and reproductive health access, Gender and Sexuality, STIs, Contraception, Anatomy, Newcomer experiences as related to sexual and reproductive health, Decolonizing Sexuality, and Sex and Disability.  

Volunteers who take our initial baseline training are eligible to take our education training (to become a volunteers education facilitator) and our options training (to become a volunteer options counselor).

Our education training usually is typically 2 days (or 4 half days). In our education training, we cover topics such as behavioral change models of education, tips for facilitation, how to challenge power dynamics in the classroom, how to handle tricky questions or situations, and how to adapt our workshops for different groups. Following the education training, volunteer education facilitators will work as a mentee with the education coordinator to continue to build their skills as an educator. Typically, volunteer educators work with the education coordinator for 6-10 workshops before taking on a full educator role.

Our options training is usually 2 day (or 4 half days). In our options training, we discuss our counseling theory, basic counseling skills, decision-making strategies, and detailed information on parenting, adoption, abortion, contraception, and STIs. Following the options training, volunteer options counselors will work as a mentee with fully trained options counselors for approximately 6 sessions, or until they are ready to take on a full counseling role.

How often do you train new volunteers?

We typically only recruit and train new volunteers once a year since new volunteers require a significant amount of training and staff time. Usually, we train new volunteers in April/May or in August/September. Please keep an eye on our social media pages (Facebook and Twitter) as we will post when we are recruiting new volunteers.

How often do you train new volunteers?

Currently, we recruit and train new volunteers once a year since new volunteers require a significant amount of training and staff time. Usually, we train new volunteers in April/May or in August/September. Please keep an eye on our social media pages (Facebook and Twitter) as we will post when we are recruiting new volunteers.

What is volunteering like?

A variety of tasks are required to keep PPO functioning, and PPO owes a lot of thanks to its volunteers to help keep us going. Volunteering can look like: working to support a specific program, kiosking, volunteer counseling, system navigation, updating our materials, helping the education program with developing and creating materials, condom blitzing and many more.

Typically volunteering with PPO looks like the process described above, however, if you are interested in becoming a board member, have specialized skills in fundraising, computer science, graphics, advertising, and communications, or speak multiple languages please contact us individually to see if we can accommodate an alternative volunteering process for you. These are areas of expertise in which we require significant support in.

Join the PPO Board

If you’re a leader in the community and would like to become a leader within Planned Parenthood Ottawa, learn about how you can join our Board of Directors.


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