I love working with the other volunteers. We take pride in managing our community’s Friends store, and we get a boost when we see how much money we’ve raised for the library.
FOPLA Volunteer

The work we do at FOPLA would not be possible without the help of more than 300 dedicated volunteers. Our organization is over 99% volunteer-run, from our committed Board of Directors and Committees, to the hard-working volunteers who manage and operate all of our used book locations.

We’re proud of the time and talents donated by all of our volunteers, who like us believe in the value of a strong library community in Ottawa. Because of their efforts, we raise more than $300,000 every year for the Ottawa Public Library.


Volunteer Roles

If you would like to donate your time and volunteer with FOPLA, there are a variety of roles that our volunteers fulfill on a daily basis to manage our used book operations. Typical duties can include:

  • Accepting book donations from the public and from FOPLA’s Tallwood Distribution Centre
  • Lifting, sorting, and shelving donated books at our used book locations or specialty sales
  • Managing inventory and revenues at a FOPLA self-serve book shelf in-branch
  • Selling books to members of the public in-store, or at a specialty sale (e.g. Book Bar)
  • Answering customer inquiries in person and by telephone
  • Administrative work as needed
  • Fulfilling the role of Store Manager if a vacancy exists
  • Accepting book donations from the public, and liaising with city staff at Distribution Facility to arrange for appropriate donation times
  • Lifting, sorting, and shelving donated books, and fulfilling requests for books from branch stores
  • Scanning and preparing books for shipment to third party organizations
  • Helping at the monthly Mammoth Sale with event with set up, tear down, and by selling books to customers during the sale
  • Assisting customers who have made an appointment to browse the Distribution Facility’s stacks
  • Answering customer inquiries by phone
  • Administrative work when needed
  • President
  • Vice-President, Operations
  • Vice-President, Communications
  • Vice-President, Marketing and Special Projects
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Directors-at-Large (2)
  • Regional Coordinators (4)

Current Opportunities

If you want to give back to the libraries that you love, check out our current Volunteer Opportunities and send us your application today. Or contact us for more information.


Distribution Facility Volunteer

100 Tallwood Drive

Mondays & Fridays : 10:00 – 16:00
Accept donations, sort, shelves, scan and ready books for distribution. Download information package.


Mammoth Sale Volunteer

100 Tallwood Drive

One Saturday per month 09:00 – 16:00
Set up and tear down monthly sale, sell books to members of the public. Download information package.


The Friends' Bookshop Volunteer (Main Branch)

120 Metcalfe Street

Monday – Friday 10:30 – 14:00 | Saturdays 10:00 – 14:00 | Sundays 13:00 – 17:00
Sell books to members of the public at The Friends’ Bookshop. Download information package.


General Interest

Various locations

Various days and hours  
Interested in volunteering for FOPLA, but unsure what role is right for you? Apply here for general inquiries.