photo of volunteers at the 2012 Powell Street Festival – by Noah Photography

We’re hiring a Volunteer Coordinator!

The Powell Street Festival Society’s (PSFS) mission is to cultivate Japanese Canadian arts and culture to connect communities. Our main activity is producing the Powell Street Festival (PSF) in Vancouver’s historic Japanese Canadian neighbourhood. PSF is an annual celebration of Japanese Canadian arts and culture. It is the largest event of its kind in Canada and the longest running festival in Metro Vancouver, entering its 41st year. The Society also produces its own programming as part of an annual season and participates in co-presentations with other arts organizations throughout the year.


Powell Street Festival Society seeks a dedicated team player for the position of Volunteer Coordinator for the 41th annual Powell Street Festival.  This temporary position is a full-time position and will start the week of May 1th and end the last week of August 2017.

Working with the PSFS staff, Board of Directors and festival core committee, the Volunteer Coordinator will be responsible primarily for filling all volunteer slots during Festival weekend and pre-Festival events. Duties include:

  • finding new sources of volunteers
  • overseeing the efficient delivery of a complex volunteer schedule during the set-up, take-down and actual Festival weekend
  • updating and maintaining the volunteer database and online application process
  • scheduling volunteers
  • finding new core volunteers
  • organizing and leading Volunteer Orientation sessions
  • coordinating the Volunteer Appreciation party
  • solicitation of donations for Volunteers
  • participating in day-to-day administrative work
  • necessary post-festival wrap-up

Please note that this position will also require some manual labour with the set-up and take-down of the festival.


The ideal candidate will have exceptional interpersonal and communication skills to handle a multifaceted group of dedicated volunteers. He/she will have experience with volunteer-run organizations and is to work calmly under pressure. The position requires exceptional organizational skills. The candidate must be creative and resourceful, and able to assess and handle difficult situations. Working knowledge of Japanese or other Asian languages is an asset, and/or experience working with non-native English language speakers. Specific experience with, or knowledge of, the national and local Asian Canadian arts scenes, the mainstream arts community, and of the operations of non-profit societies is also desirable. First aid training is an asset. Candidates should be familiar and comfortable working in the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood in which the Festival has been held for the past 40 years.

Must have a flexible schedule and able to work some evenings and weekends, including attending committee meetings as needed.  Must be available during the following dates for the Powell Street Festival (August 2 to August 9, 2017).

The Festival is accepting all applications including those who are eligible for Youth Canada Works.

The deadline for applications is 10:00 am, Friday March 3, 2017

Applications will be accepted by email only. Please submit a resume and cover letter to emiko[at], and include “Volunteer Coordinator 2017” in the subject line. No phone calls please. Please indicate if you qualify for Youth Canada Works or Canada Summer Jobs funding.  

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

Wage is commensurate with experience: $14-15/hour