Volunteering

How To Volunteer

Head Mechanic Opportunities

Shop Assistant / Mechanic Opportunities

We have "Basics Night" for volunteers. Please read more here.

Volunteering

We always need your help at re-Cycles!

The main ongoing task for us is overhauling the donated bikes, which range in condition from excellent to heavily used, and getting them ready for sale. Experience is helpful, but not essential, because anyone can participate in our learn-as-you-go approach. One of our on-duty Head Mechanics will help guide you through the process, and you may also be paired with a more experienced volunteer. We have shop aprons and coats to wear if you need to keep your clothes clean, and also some very effective hand cleaner for washing up when you are done.

And we have a special deal for all of our volunteers! Every hour you donate to us can be exchanged for a free hour at the shop to work on your own bike. You get a card, we stamp it with your hours, and you can redeem them at your convenience.

We also have our "Basics Night" for volunteers that are new to bike repair. Please see the Basics Night page for full details.

There is a wonderful sense of satisfaction when we take an old or neglected bike, breathe new life into it, and save it from a possible landfill fate. And that satisfaction is complete when someone buys one of our bikes and gets it back on the street!

How to Volunteer

The best way to get started with us is to simply show up at our shop and tell the on-duty staff that you wish to help out. No commitment or reservations are needed; we are happy that you can join us when you have time available, and you can do so on your own schedule. Alternatively, you can email our

We also have our Basics Night for volunteers. Please read more here.

In addition to bicycle repair, we have other volunteer opportunities:

Become a Head Mechanic (details below).

Become a Shop Assistant and / or Mechanic (details below).

Volunteering with re-Cycles has many benefits:

You can fine-tune you bicycle repair skills.

You can meet like-minded cyclists in the Ottawa area.

If you are a Secondary school student, you can carry out your required volunteer work with us.

Your volunteer experience with us can make a useful addition to a resume.

Skills learned at our co-op can help you find jobs with local bicycle shops.

Head Mechanic

re-Cycles is especially keen to have more experienced bike mechanics join our team of Head Mechanics. We're searching for friendly people with experience in bike mechanics and an interest in running at least one evening shop session every month. As Head Mechanic (HM), you would have the opportunity to make good use of your bicycle mechanics knowledge:

guiding and helping volunteers working on re-Cycles' bikes.

providing instruction and advice to "do-it-yourselfers" working on their own bikes.

assisting customers wishing to purchase a re-Cycles bicycle.

generally managing the shop during for the duration of the shift.

As a Head Mechanic, you get the benefit of having access to the shop outside of regular hours, not to mention meeting all kinds of neat bicycle-people.

If you are interested in joining our HM team, please talk to the on-duty Head Mechanic at the shop when we are open, or contact re-Cycles Coordinator Unless we already know you as a regular volunteer we ask that you serve as a Shop Assistant for a little while just so you can get the hang of how our shop operates.

Shop Assistant / Mechanic

Our shop can get very busy, so a while back we created the position of Shop Assistant (SA).

As an SA you deal with all the incoming and outgoing people. You can chat with with first time (or returning) visitors, advising prospective bike buyers, direct volunteers to the HM, handle bike and part sales, and keep track of some basic statistics.

You don't need to have the extensive mechanical expertise that our Head Mechanics have, but you will need to know how the shop operates. In addition to an initial orientation session we also have a Procedures Manual for reference.

If you are interested in becoming a Shop Assistant it would be preferable that you have already done some basic volunteering with us, and know how the show functions, but this is not a prerequisite. For more info please email our

The Mechanic position is for those that would prefer to directly assist the Head Mechanic in helping guide volunteers and Do-It-Yourselfers with repair work. This is also a step towards possibly become a full-fledged Head Mechanic. One still has to start out as a Shop Assistant while you get the hang of how we operate.

Updated May 5, 2015

Copyright 2015 re-Cycles