Add your voice: Volunteer with CPAWS-OV

Written by guest blogger Allison Forsythe, who is a proud CPAWS-OV volunteer and is madly in love with sea turtles.

Photo by Christopher Policarpio

I like to believe that most people do want to help protect wildlife and wild places, but some just don’t know where to start. I was one of those people. Oh, I recycled everything possible, conserved energy, saved water, and started walking to work – but I didn’t necessarily feel as though I was contributing to something. Somehow, through my teenaged years and university career, I had convinced myself that I didn’t have enough time (or perhaps the skills) to volunteer. I based that conviction on…nothing. I just assumed it. Earlier this year, however, I decided to give myself a jolt and volunteer with the Ottawa Valley Chapter of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS-OV – link here: Today, I can’t imagine not volunteering. It turns out that I do (lo and behold) have a few spare hours each month to add my voice to something meaningful. In return, that small investment not only gives me peace of mind (I am contributing to something!), but it has also introduced me to incredible people – and I’m gaining new skills and experience to fill up my resume, to boot. Not only do I have a new circle of friends, but my eyes have been opened up to alternative career paths that I didn’t know existed before. As a volunteer, I’ve been out in the community at summer festivals (chatting with people about CPAWS-OV’s work and how they can help), and I’m part of a team that is currently working to “freshen up” the CPAWS-OV website.

CPAWS-OV is always looking for new volunteers, and if any of the positions below interest you, I would like to invite you to contact the organization (but this is not a complete list!):

Committee Outreach Volunteers

Help us spread the word about a CPAWS campaign! This is a great opportunity for the social bunnies out there who enjoy talking to people and sharing their passion for nature. New volunteers are matched with seasoned ones, so you get to meet other volunteers at the same time. Time commitment: a few hours at events (once or twice a month)


We are looking for someone who is comfortable with writing, photography, and video (for youtube). This role involves attending the event(s), documenting the activities, and reporting all about it through social media and our upcoming blog. Time commitment: attending events (once or twice a month), plus two hours following each event to share the stories


As CPAWS-OV serves the communities in both Ontario and Quebec, we need volunteers to translate documents (such as news items, presentation materials, and website posts) from English to French. This work can be done from home! Time commitment: 2-3 hours/week

Fundraising and Event officers

As a non-profit organization, CPAWS-OV is looking for volunteers to help us find grants that could support our work, assist with writing grant proposals, and identify other fundraising opportunities. We are also hoping to organize a fundraising event in the fall for which we can use extra hands on deck. Time commitment: 3-4 hours/week

If these positions sound great (or if you would like to help in a different capacity), please contact and/or join us on Facebook for up-to-the-minute information about volunteer opportunities and campaign updates (

4 thoughts on “Add your voice: Volunteer with CPAWS-OV

  • Funning thing is, I don’t have volunteers, neither go begging for grant money nor get any… and I get a lot more done than CPAWS-OV on the Gatineau Park protection file (see

    CPAWS has completely skidded off the rails. It has failed to secure Gatineau Park legislation, preferring to put the interests of members who own land in the park above the public interest.

    Silly, hypocritical and irrelevant do-nothings who take credit for the work of others, accusing anyone who gets anything done of extremism.

    Don’t give them any money – they’ll only waste it by polluting the web with silly videos and the earth with sillier calendars or confused brochures/reports.

    As for CPAWS-OV serving Quebec: not one single member of its Gatineau Park Committee or board is a francophone Quebecer.

    And volunteering with them would be a waste of time if you are serious about getting anything done to protect Gatineau Park.

  • As CPAWS-OV serves the communities in both Ontario and Quebec, we need volunteers to translate documents (such as news items, presentation materials, and website posts) from English to French AND FROM FRENCH TO ENGLISH. This work can be done from home! Time commitment: 2-3 hours/week

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