Your Guide to Volunteering in Toronto
Below please find all the info you need to know in advance of our volunteer event on Thursday, October 26 and Friday, October 27. Have an immediate question? Call the events hotline at 1-800-985-8232.
Our opening reception, generously hosted by Tourism Toronto from 5pm-6:30pm, invites volunteers to grab their registration materials, mingle with colleagues while having a drink, eating local food and enjoying some fun and games! Join us at Rec Room - Toronto Roundhouse, 255 Bremner Blvd, Toronto.
Please note: Transportation will not be provided to the opening reception. Tours will drop off directly at the reception location. Other volunteers can make their way to the reception via uber/lyft/cab - or, if you are staying at the InterContinental, it is a 9 minute walk to the reception location. Click here for walking directions.
Registration will be available on Thursday evening during the welcome reception at Rec Room (Toronto Roundhouse, 255 Bremner Blvd, Toronto) from 5pm - 6:30pm.
Can't make it? We do encourage it for networking purposes, but we understand busy schedules. If you can't be with us Thursday, please have a friend or colleague grab your stuff or come to the registration area at the Metro Toronto Convention Center, Room 201 AB (North Building, located off of Front Street W) at 7am on Friday morning.
// Thursday, October, 26 - Arrivals //
Beginning at 3pm: Tours of Toronto are available (sign-up with Kati if you haven't done so already!)
5pm - 6:30pm: Welcome to Toronto Opening Reception at Rec Room, hosted by Tourism Toronto - (Toronto Roundhouse, 255 Bremner Blvd,) Join us to pick up your registration materials and enjoy food, drinks and games with old and new friends!
>> PLEASE NOTE: There will be NO provided transportation to the opening reception venue. It is a 9 minute walk from the host hotel.
For those driving in, the closest parking is available for $15 (up to 1.5 hours) at the Metro Convention Center South Lot (entrance located on Lower Simcoe Street between Bremmer Blvd. and Grand Trunk Crescent).
What do I do after the reception? Toronto is known for its amazing restaurants! Please take a look at Tourism Toronto’s website for recommendations.
// Friday, October, 27 - Workday! //
7am: Registration/opening announcements at the Metro Toronto Convention Center Room 201 AB (North Building, located off of Front Street W).
Coffee and tea will be served, and a to-go breakfast sandwich will be provided to help fuel you for the morning
After opening announcements, volunteers will board coaches by work group and transfer to sites.
8:15am: Work begins!
1:45pm: Worksite clean-up begins. Please help our worksite partners by putting tools away and picking up all your belongings and trash! Volunteers transfer from their worksites to the closing thank you reception.
2pm - 3:30pm: Let's celebrate! Closing thank you lunch (and a beer on us!) at Real Sports (15 York St, Toronto, ON).
Our work groups are indicated by a colored bandana to help us get you to the correct work site in the morning. Your workgroup assignment will be noted in the base of your final document email. Please be sure to read about your workday and schedule in advance. Don't see your final doc email? Check your spam or email Jess or Kati and they will forward along.
Project descriptions can be found here.
WORK SITE COLORS
StopGap Foundation Ramp Painting – Orange Group
Black Creek Community Farm Trail Restoration – Green Group
Highway of Heroes Tree Planting – Red Group
Enhancing Community Spaces in St. James Town- Blue Group
We organize our work groups based on a number of factors, so we kindly ask that you do not switch colors before the day begins!
If you’re flying in/out of Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) you can get 25% off a round-trip ticket on the UP Express. To book please visit UPexpress.com before October 27, 2017 and use promo code TCares2017 to get your 25% discount on adult return (round-trip) tickets between Pearson and Union Station. UP Express connects Toronto Pearson International Airport to Union Station in the heart of downtown Toronto (steps from the InterContinental Hotel) in just 25 stress-free minutes—less than half the time it often takes by car. Trains leave every 15 minutes with the first train departing Pearson Station at 5:27AM and the last train departing at 1:00AM.
Thursday Evening Reception: Transportation will be on your own!
The reception is a short (9 minute) walk from InterContinental to Rec Room. Click here for walking directions.
For those driving in, the closest parking is available for $15 (up to 1.5 hrs) at the Metro Convention Center South Lot (entrance located on Lower Simcoe Street between Bremmer Blvd. and Grand Trunk Crescent).
Friday Morning - Work Day:
Because parking is limited at our worksites, we are asking all volunteers to meet at the Metro Toronto Convention Center in room 201 AB, North Building to be transferred to the worksites as a group.
Those staying at the InterContinental can walk from the hotel lobby to directly to the Convention Center.
PARKING: A discounted parking rate of $12 USD for the day at the Metro Convention Center is available to all volunteers. Please pay for your parking ticket in advance by clicking this link. A TC staff member will have your ticket Friday morning at the convention center. North Lot parking is located on Lower Simcoe Street under the InterContinental Hotel. Please be sure to follow parking signs for the Convention Center. Discount does not apply to hotel parking.
The Thursday evening program is completely casual - please wear whatever you are comfortable in!
For Friday, please come wearing your provided Tourism Cares long sleeved shirt and bring your colored bandana. In addition, the following dress is required:
· Long pants
· STURDY closed-toed shoes! It's function first and not fashion - sturdier sneakers/boots are required
· Your name badge
· Please bring a hat in case of sunshine
· Please bring your provided backpack to hold on to any belongings
· Be sure to wear layers to stay warm in the expected cooler weather
On Thursday, we will be serving heavy hor d'oeuvres, beer and wine courtesy of Tourism Toronto. We encourage all volunteers to make dinner plans in one of the Toronto restaurants nearby.
On Friday morning, Tourism Cares will provide coffee, tea and to-go breakfast sandwiches.
We will provide you with a heavy snack and water for the workday. Since we will be ending in the early afternoon, there will be a full lunch and drink ticket offered at the closing reception at 2pm at Real Sports.
A backpack will be provided to all the volunteers so that you may carry your belongings with you on the workday. There will not be a secure area to store any luggage or bags throughout the day, so we would suggest arranging to have your bags stored with the hotel.
Toronto in October is usually beautiful, but a little chilly with the temperatures in the mid-40s in the morning and mid-50s through the afternoon. We suggest you pack layers to stay warm.
If it rains... you sing and we cry! ;) Our work can be completed rain or shine and we will provide ponchos in the event of inclement weather. Please call the events hotline that morning to double-check that we are still on and check the weather in advance to best prepare.
To learn more about each worksite please CLICK HERE. Your workgroup assignment will be noted in the base of your final document email. Please be sure to read about your workday and schedule in advance. Don't see your final doc email? Check your spam or email Jess or Kati and they will forward along.
Make sure you are following us on FB, Twitter and Instagram @TourismCares and use #tcvolunteers and #TC4TORONTO throughout the workday!