“The opportunity to work within such an interdisciplinary team with diverse expertise can be a breath of fresh air from your day job, and a great introduction to the non-profit landscape and world of consulting.” – Tanya Rumble
What attracts so many professionals and university students to volunteer with Endeavour? We provide the unique opportunity to work with leaders on strategic issues to improve the non-profit sector’s capacity and impact, while learning and connecting with a high-calibre group of volunteers from diverse backgrounds that will further your professional and personal growth. Learn more about our volunteers and what they have to say about Endeavour.
“Endeavour has grown from an idea into an action. Over the years I have been serving on the board, the organization has evolved to become an innovative and effective way to deal with two strategic challenges facing Ontario. We do a great service to nonprofits that can’t afford professional consulting, helping them get to the next level. And in an era where there are fewer and fewer volunteers and their average age is increasing, we offer a great way for younger people to engage in the nonprofit sector. I’ve been proud to be part of Endeavour’s first few years – and I look forward to its continued growth.”
Alex Gill, Board of Directors
Principal, Mendicant Group
“Endeavour has done a great job in building a dynamic, creative and exciting vehicle to provide educational and skill development opportunities for volunteers and focusing their efforts on assisting the not-for-profit sector in Toronto with a level of determination and professionalism that has earned my respect.”
Barry Linetsky, Advisory Committee
Partner, The Strategic Planning Group
“My volunteer consulting experience has taught me that there is a significant need for capacity-building among charitable and non-profit organizations, and that organizations such as Endeavour provide a valuable service to the community by enabling local and national charities to do what they do better, in a more sustainable way.
I have already recommended Endeavour to several acquaintances due to the personally rewarding opportunity to contribute to the local community with a long-lasting impact; this is also the reason why I plan to volunteer with Endeavour again.”
Tatjana Ljaskevic, Consultant
Civil Engineering Student, University of Toronto
“Over the past 18 years, my work career has spanned both the non-profit and public sectors where I’ve had progressive work experience from frontline to management, in the areas of social work, grant management and policy analysis. Similarly, I have volunteered with non-profit organizations for over 20 years in various positions, from coordinator to board member.
My experiences as a volunteer with Endeavour have been enjoyable. I get the opportunity to use the skills that I have developed over the years in both my professional and volunteer careers in a different and unique fashion, while continuing to support and build capacity in the voluntary sector. Equally important is the opportunity to work with a diverse team of people – university students, new grads, young and other seasoned professionals from a variety of academic and work backgrounds. This diversity has enriched the experienced for me. It has also helped me to strengthen my leadership style to accommodate working with people with different levels of readiness and capacity.
I also like how Endeavour as an organization is growing and developing through a focus on organizational effectiveness, including undertaking strategies to help strengthen the capacity of volunteer consultants.
Because of my experiences, I have recommended Endeavour to colleagues who are interested in volunteering or in pursuing consulting as a future career. In doing so, I have been candid with them stating that while the benefits of volunteering are great, the commitment can be considerable at times, so they must be prepared to undertake this responsibility.”
Allyson Collymore, Engagement Manager
Manager, Education & Vocation Supports, Ontario Ministry of Children & Youth Services
“I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of working with my team and with the Endeavour Executive. The team approach, combined with the resources, support and advisory offered by Endeavour allowed us to perform a complex assignment, in a flexible manner that fit with the schedules of our team members – all busy professionals and students of various backgrounds and expertise but united in our enthusiasm to learn from each other and committed to delivering a meaningful product to our client.
Thank you Endeavour for providing the framework to allow this type of volunteerism. I think we gave the client what they were seeking and we had a great time doing it!”
Hilary Jacob, Consultant
Senior Financial Analyst, Murray & Company
“I really enjoyed my volunteer experience with Endeavour. I was mostly impressed with the great people I met during my consulting engagement – my colleagues/consultants, our engagement manager, advisors and the Endeavour executive team. I continue to stay in touch with many of them.
This experience helped me with my career development. As a newbie in Canada (only one year at that time), I knew I needed to build my credibility in the consulting/project management field. Although I had great work experience from Europe, I understood that many Canadian businesses were looking for relevant Canadian experience. I started to build my work experience in Canada with some project work in the non-profit sector and through this I was exposed to Endeavour.
At the conclusion of my Endeavour consulting engagement I got a position with the Ontario Government as a business improvement consultant and you can be sure the Endeavour experience contributed to this career milestone.”
Lucie Drabinova, Consultant
Business Improvement Consultant, Ontario Government
“Having completed my MBA and done part-time consulting work for small and medium enterprises, the Engagement Manager role at Endeavour gave me a great opportunity to further develop my consulting and leadership skills as well as apply learnings from the MBA program. The experiences of working with a team of high-performing, diverse individuals with varying experiences and motivations was the most enjoyable and rewarding part for me. I was very impressed by Endeavour’s focus on continuous improvement and commitment towards its volunteers and clients.
I would recommend everyone seeking exposure to consulting or the non-profit sector to Endeavour, irrespective of their level of experience.”
Parikshit Ralhan, Engagement Manager
Senior Business Analyst, TELUS
“Over the past three years, I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to be a part of Endeavour. This team of passionate and diverse individuals continues to support and excite volunteers to help improve the actions of non-profit organizations.
During the inception of Endeavour, I had recently graduated from the Ivey School of Business, and was looking for a way to give back to my community while utilizing my education. When I came across Endeavour, I was immediately drawn to their mission. Endeavour has a great value proposition not only for the organizations it supports, but for volunteers and the surrounding business community.
Every consulting project has been a challenging and unique experience, and it is extremely rewarding to see clients implement Endeavour’s recommendations. At the end of each project cycle, it is easy to return due to celebrated successes, but more importantly, the unsurpassed effort Endeavour has placed towards continuous improvement and growth.
Endeavour is an organization with unlimited potential, but more so, it is a group of outstanding individuals building momentum in the community, of which I am proud to say I am a part of.”
Tara Shanahan, Consultant
Management Trainee, Maple Leaf Foods
“Coming from an engineering background, the skills that I had were largely technical. However, Endeavour’s training, constant advice and exposure from my project advisor, as well as previous work experience, greatly helped in increasing my knowledge base as well as soft skills such as client management and report writing. Looking back, I realized that the learning curve was steep – I started with virtually no skills or experience. I finished my first consulting engagement with an understanding of how complex the non-profit sector is and how much need there is, and with more confidence in the knowledge that I can make a difference.
Next year, I will begin an internship with CIBC in process engineering. A significant portion of that job is dealing with clients, diagnosing problems, change management, and implementation of solutions – a process that is very similar to Endeavour’s. Needless to say, my volunteer experience with Endeavour was a significant factor in me landing the internship. I was able to draw on my project experience for my interviews and was able to differentiate myself from the competition. Furthermore, my project at Endeavour pushed me into report writing, giving presentations to professional audiences, preparing for client meetings, and collaborating within a team. Undoubtedly, I will continue to draw on my Endeavour experience when I start my internship.
The best part about working with Endeavour is the large pool of talented people that it attracts each year. Endeavour participants are people who take initiative and who are excited about seeing change in the community – I take pride in knowing that I am a part of this dynamic group.”
Neha Tummala, Consultant
Industrial Engineering Student, University of Toronto
“I am currently a doctoral student studying infectious disease at the University of Toronto. I have had an interest in management consulting for some time and became involved with Endeavour after a word of mouth referral. I was especially drawn to their desire to help non-profits with lower budgets achieve success.
I began as a consultant on the Canadian Hearing Society project in 2008/2009. Endeavour provided volunteers with the training and networks needed to really make a difference for our client, while giving us the independence to directly work with our client to source out their true needs. I was able to learn important team work and client management skills while being exposed to how truly exceptional non-profit work can be. These organizations make a dramatic difference to their communities on very limited budgets and resources, making the opportunity to consult for them an excellent learning opportunity.
After my first consulting engagement, I really wanted to stay involved with Endeavour to help promote their mission and success. As an experienced consultant, I assisted in volunteer screening and interviewing, and am now working on the case competition planning committee.”
Wendy Dobson-Belaire, Consultant
PhD Student, University of Toronto
“Volunteering with Endeavour is different from typical volunteering engagements in many ways, especially in the way that the impact of your work continues to multiply long after your volunteer term. You could invest five hours of your week serving the homeless at your local soup kitchen; when you leave, X number of individuals were fed and await your participation the following week to experience the same outcome. However, in investing the same amount of time with Endeavour, you’d assist the said soup kitchen’s managerial team in structurally developing and optimizing the organization for continued success.
What I’ve enjoyed most about Endeavour has been working alongside such knowledgeable, passionate individuals; the talent pool from which Endeavour attracts candidates is of the highest calibre I have ever experienced in my professional career thus far – PhD holders, professors, CEOs, consultants!
I’ve volunteered with Endeavour for two years and continue to stay involved because of the nature of the work and the people involved in this organization. While you’re giving back to the community, you’re getting back so much in the way of experience and knowledge from peers. Plus, the impact of the work that you do is felt immediately.
I’ve recommended Endeavour to several friends.”
Hamza Khan, Consultant
Marketing & Design Coordinator, University of Toronto Scarborough Department of Student Life
“I have had the privilege of volunteering three times with Endeavour, and have watched the organization grow immensely over the years, increasing its presence and impact in the community. Volunteering with Endeavour is a great way to give back to the community, while strengthening and developing new skills, meeting new people, and learning about innovative and interesting initiatives aimed to help those who need it the most.
I cannot recommend Endeavour enough to friends and colleagues.”
Hima Batavia, Consultant
Research Officer, McLaughlin-Rotman Centre for Global Health
“As an undergraduate engineering student, I return to volunteer with Endeavour round after round because I believe this organization has created a win-win situation for the non-profit clients and the volunteers, and developed a passionate community of incredible individuals.
Endeavour has given me the space and guidance to develop the soft skills to complement the theories I have learned from my technical curriculum. From my consulting teams, I have discovered new frameworks for analyzing our client’s situation and the difficult task of triaging potential solutions so that they are implemented within a realistic timeline. From my advisors, I have learned to avoid common assumption pitfalls and the importance of flexibility when working with clients. From communicating with clients, I realized the significance of user buy-in and the need to read between the lines to truly understand the root cause of an organization’s challenges.
I enjoy returning to Endeavour because of the incredible individuals I have met along the way. I am fortunate to have worked with teammates with experiences that stretch from the financial industry to government departments to the social housing sector and beyond. As a student, this is a rare opportunity to interact so closely with this impressive team of professionals and experts within their career, and have broadened my view of the possibilities after graduation.
I highly recommend volunteering with Endeavour, especially for student leaders. I hope your future volunteering experience will be as rewarding as mine.”
Kelvin Lui, Consultant
Engineering Science Student, University of Toronto