Cause Areas


It's flexible! We'll work with your schedule.


1001 E Fifth StVancouver, WA 98661

A carpenter shop volunteer helps a little girl build a wooden toy. NPS Photo by Troy Wayrynen


If you are interested in applying please go to volunteer.gov and search for "Fort Vancouver". Select the "Carpenter Shop Volunteer" opportunity and apply through the volunteer.gov webpage.

The volunteer program at the Fort Vancouver Carpenter’s shop offers an opportunity for qualified individuals to serve as volunteer interpreters and demonstrators at the shop. The volunteer tells the story of the Hudson Bay Company carpenter’s shop and related industries such as coopage and wheelwrighting, its personnel, and the important role these individuals played in the expansion of Euro-American industry in the Pacific Northwest. All volunteers will be expected to become familiar with the relevant historical information and develop effective and educational presentations for the visiting public. Telling the story of the carpenter’s shop to the visitor is the number one priority for our volunteers. Carpentry skills are secondary to this primary purpose and are used to enhance the story being told.

Responsibilities and Duties

  • Become familiar with the relevant historical information and develop effective presentations for our visitors.
  • Learn to identify, describe, and demonstrate the traditional hand tools.
  • Complete woodworking projects (commensurate with individual skills) or practice activities which are self-assigned or assigned by the Carpenter Shop lead.
  • Willingness to follow directions
  • Adherence to mandatory safety rules
  • Willingness to share in maintenance chores of the shop and all shop equipment
  • Working conditions may involve light to heavy physical labor such as bending, lifting, and repetitive operations
  • The shop is subject to climatic fluctuations from pretty cold to very hot
  • Long periods of standing may be required in many assignments
  • Volunteers must be polite and attentive to the visitors at all time, all assignments require dealing with the public at some level

Knowledge and Abilities Required for the Position

  • No previous experience is necessary, but the volunteer must be willing to follow directions, must adhere to safe practices and must share in shop and tool maintenance.
  • Volunteers are expected to be self-motivated to utilize our libraries and other resources, including staff and other volunteers, to build their knowledge and interpretive skills.
  • Traditional carpentry requires a high level of skills with hand tools, and each volunteer will develop sufficient hand tool skills to show our visitors how the tools were used.


Guidelines include established National Park Service procedures, program objectives, interpretation guidelines, legislative mandates, management policies, park practices, and supervisory guidelines. The volunteer should report problems to his or her supervisor.

Work Environment

Work will take place in the historic carpenter shop, and each volunteer is expected to wear ap-propriate period clothing which can be checked out from our historic clothing repository. Temperatures can be extreme, depending upon the time of year, and long periods of standing, and occasional light to heavy physical labor with some lifting, bending, and repetitive actions will be required.


  • Public Speaking
  • Woodworking
  • People Skills
  • Storytelling

Good Match For

People 55+

Requirements & Commitment

  • Orientation or Training
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