Useful Documents:

Classroom Garden Fact Sheet

A description of the growing systems used by Classroom Gardens: Growing System Choices

Useful links:

Raise Funds by Hosting an Event.

It starts with a great idea – and ends with the reward of making a donation that will enhance education and support local student success.

Event resources:

ONFE Poster
ONFE Fact Sheet
Donation collection Form

business team meeting and discussing a concept

“Unlike at school, where you are provided with materials, taught a lesson, and given time to study; JA puts you in situations that make you think and act on your feet. You are tested first, and then you learn from your failures or your successes.”

~ Khadeer, JA Company participant and award winner

You Can Help Students Thrive

Children that grow vegetables in school are more likely to try nutritious foods. Your donation will support innovative programs like Classroom Gardens that bring school curriculum to life with hands-on learning experiences.

Become a Volunteer Today

Retirees, students, recent graduates, working professionals and other community-minded individuals volunteer to help bring ONFE programs into classrooms across Ottawa. Our volunteers mentor, instruct, tutor, read, serve breakfast and more. They are central to our mission to support student success.

Education Partnerships

Conseil des ecoles catholiques du centre-est logo
Ottawa-Carleton District School Board logo
Conseil des ecoles publiques de l'Est de l'Ontario logo
Ottawa Catholic School Board logo
ONFE, ROPE, Ottawa Network for Education, charity, not for profit, fundraising, Algonquin College
ONFE, ROPE, Ottawa Network for Education, charity, not for profit, fundraising, La Cite
ONFE, ROPE, Ottawa Network for Education, charity, not for profit, fundraising, University of Ottawa, UofO
ONFE, ROPE, Ottawa Network for Education, charity, not for profit, fundraising, Carleton University
ONFE, ROPE, Ottawa Network for Education, charity, not for profit, fundraising, Universite Saint-Paul

Our focus areas

Student Support

As many as 15% of local students have learning challenges; and up to 22% of Ottawa students are immigrants or new English language learners. We strive to remove barriers to learning by matching trained volunteers with teachers and students that need extra help.

Health & Well-being

There is a direct correlation between the health and well-being of children and youth, and their ability to learn and succeed in school. At ONFE, we identify and provide solutions to serious problems that affect wellness and academic achievement, including student hunger, inadequate nutrition and drug and alcohol addiction.

Career Readiness

We strive to help secondary students make informed career choices and transition successfully to post-secondary studies and fulfilling careers. Our innovative programming helps students develop financial literacy, entrepreneurial thinking and work readiness skills.

Discover our programs

See how we’re tackling major social and education issues head on and having a positive impact on student learning, well-being, and career readiness.

Spark the Entrepreneurial Spirit of Youth

Help students connect classroom learning with real-world problems and issues. Your investment will inspire high school students to develop needed soft skills for tomorrow’s careers and help foster a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation in our K-12 schools.

Volunteer with JA Ottawa

You can help us develop tomorrow’s leaders! Our volunteers teach JA curriculum and lead students through interactive learning activities, while sharing personal work-related experiences and knowledge. You can boost your company’s profile, develop your leadership and communication skills, and have a great deal of fun.

Educator Online Form

If you are an educator in the OCDSB, and you’d like a volunteer to provide academic or social support for a specific student, or if you would benefit from general classroom support, please complete the form in the button below, or contact Anne Brouillard or Lee-Ann Scott on OCDSB google mail.

Volunteer Management Handbook

Please review the School Volunteer Management Handbook for Educators "School Volunteer Management Handbook for Educators”; for tips on managing volunteers in schools.

Get Tools and Resources for Ottawa Volunteers in Education

Some helpful tools to ensure you have a great volunteer experience

How to become a volunteer

Learn about the process of becoming a volunteer with the Ottawa Volunteers in Education program

Give Back to School Day

Give Back to School Day is an opportunity to make a direct impact on our youth.

This year marks the tenth anniversary of Give Back to School Day, delivered by ONFE! Over the course of the last ten years, corporate teams and other community groups have undertaken school beautification projects such as gardening, landscaping and mural painting at economically disadvantaged schools.


Group volunteering is a great way to engage your team, providing an opportunity to spend time together outside of the office, while giving back to your community. Companies that value education and youth and want to give back in the community where their employees work and live often choose to participate in Give Back to School Day.

Give Back to School Day turns ten!

“Creating and participating in Give Back to School Day and watching it flourish over these past years has been a truly rewarding experience. Give Back to School Day provides volunteers with a unique hands on opportunity to roll up their sleeves and contribute to the enhancement of the schools’ environment by completing projects chosen by school staff and the children, projects which would not otherwise be possible. Give Back to School Day also provides reading partners and organizations with a valuable team building experience for their employees. Give Back to School Day has and continues to be a win-win event for reading partners, volunteers, elementary schools and most of all, for our children.”

Jane Bachynski, Senior Associate, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP

What is the power of volunteering?

 “School pride is an essential component in building a successful school community. Having pride gives students a sense of ownership and as a result, they do better in school. Give Back to School Day provides an opportunity for community volunteers to work together to improve the school environment—the students and the volunteers see the immediate impact of their work.”  

Lee-Ann Scott, past Director of Volunteer Programs at ONFE





Fall Gardening: Preparing for Spring

Several schools are looking for teams of volunteers to put the school gardens to bed for the winter. Various tasks are required, such as pruning, weeding, replanting, etc.

Spring Gardening: Preparing for May Flowers

Several schools are looking for teams of volunteers to refresh their school gardens annually. Various tasks are required, such as pruning, weeding, replanting, etc.

Painting Murals: School Welcome Projects

Many schools would appreciate having a group of volunteers paint murals in the school reception areas or washrooms.

For more information, please contact:

Heather Kotelniski
Program Manager, Volunteer Programs
900 Morrison Drive, Suite 205
Ottawa, Ontario K2H 8K7
Tel: 613-366-3085 ext. 253


To see all our volunteer opportunities, check out our website: