Job Opportunity: Program Assistant

The Powell Street Festival Society’s (PSFS) mission is to cultivate Japanese Canadian art and culture to connect communities. The main activity is producing the Powell Street Festival (PSF), an annual celebration of Japanese Canadian arts, music and culture in Vancouver’s historic Japanese Canadian neighbourhood, Paueru Gai in the Downtown Eastside (DTES). With the support of over 250 volunteers, this two-day free event is the largest of its kind in Canada and the longest running festival in Metro Vancouver, entering its 47th year. PSFS is a non-profit professional arts presenter that is progressive, diverse, contemporary, and compelling. 

Position Details: Program Assistant

Powell Street Festival Society seeks a dedicated team player for the position of Program Assistant for the 47th Annual Powell Street Festival. This temporary position is a full-time position (35 hr/week) and will start on May 8 and end August 18, 2023. 

Working with PSFS staff, Board of Directors, and Festival Core Committee, the Program Assistant will work with a team and independently on the festival production. The position will require working from home, in an office, and at the festival site location. 

Duties include: 

  • assist with the artists contracts, schedule and stage plots 
  • assist with the festival program and website content 
  • assist with online and in-person society events  
  • support live events in the Powell Street neighbourhood  
  • assist with the site preparations and installation 
  • assist with artist and festival promotions 
  • participate in day-to-day administrative work  
  • participate in the Cultural Worker Training Program and staff meetings 
  • assist with donations and supplies, including pick-ups and deliveries 
  • assist with and participate in day-to-day administrative work  
  • necessary post-festival wrap-up 

During a set period between July 15 and August 11, 2023, the Program Assistant and Operations Manager will work out an averaging agreement. During this period, the Program Assistant will work 160 hours, averaging out to 4 weeks of full-time work (averaging 40 hours per week). Wages will be paid out based upon a 40-hour work week. Overtime will be paid if the Program Assistant works more than the specified hours in the agreed schedule between July 15 and August 11, 2023. The Program Assistant is required to discuss with the Employer should they anticipate overtime will be required. 

Please note that this position will also require some manual labour.
The Program Assistant reports to the Program Coordinator. 


The ideal candidate has the following skills, knowledge, and experience: 

  • Ability to demonstrate professionalism as a representative of PSFS while understanding the stakeholders and audience of a community-based organization.  
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and organizational skills.
  • Creative, resourceful, and be able to work independently and collaboratively.  
  • Working knowledge of Japanese or other Asian languages is an asset. 
  • Experience with stage or event management is an asset.
  • First aid training is an asset. 
  • Possession of a valid drivers license is an asset.   
  • Familiar and comfortable working in the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood in which the Festival has been held for over 40 years. 
  • Must have a flexible schedule and be able to work some evenings and weekends, including attending committee meetings as needed. Must be available from July 29 to August 11, 2023.  

Application Instructions

The deadline for applications is 5:00pm, May 5, 2023.

Applications will be accepted by email only. Please submit a resume and cover letter to jobs[at], and include “Program Assistant” in the subject line. No phone calls please. 

Powell Street Festival Society thanks all applicants in advance for their interest; however, only short-listed candidates will be contacted. 

Wage: $18 to $22/hour. The midpoint of the range represents employee that possesses full job knowledge, qualifications and experience for the position.