Thu. Dec 7th, 2023
What to expect: Living in staff housing

Are you considering applying to a park that offers staff house accommodations?

Living in a staff house in a provincial park can be an incredible, unique and memorable experience.

Read on to find out what life is like in a staff house.

What is staff accommodation?

Staff accommodation takes many different forms and varies from park to park.

A staff home can be a house, lodge, rustic cabin, or travel/modular trailer.

Staff houses are typically shared, fully furnished accommodation. You may have a shared or single room with access to shared living areas, including kitchen, dining room, bathrooms, showers and laundry.

Staff houses can house anywhere from one to more than 50 staff members, depending on the park.

Which parks offer staff housing?

More than 35 provincial parks offer limited house accommodations for staff. Visit our staff housing page for a list of parks that have staff housing available.

Staff House Benefits

Campfires, new friends, endless sunsets, and amazing wildlife sightings are just a few of the benefits of living in a staff house.

Here’s a closer look at what makes living in a park such a special experience:

Friendships for life

While living in a staff house, you are likely to develop close bonds with your co-workers and can form strong friendships.

Three young adults sitting on a bench in a forest, smiling broadly at the camera with their arms outstretched

Whether you go to the lake to watch a sunset together, take a walk to the beach to gaze at the stars, or spend your days off exploring the area, these shared moments will make summer fun.

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Veteran Ontario Parks staff often highlight the friendships they made during their time living in a staff house.

A person standing at the edge of a forest at night, pointing his flashlight at a sky full of stars.

A sense of community

Staff accommodation brings together people from diverse backgrounds. Living in a staff house is a great opportunity to share new experiences and learn about different cultures.

Four young people walking towards a forest, their backs to the camera

After work and on days off, staff often enjoy campfires, cooking together, exploring their home park and nearby parks, and sharing hobbies and interests.

Many parks host events such as barbecues and sporting events throughout the summer for park staff to participate.

A park like your backyard

Calling a provincial park home during the summer allows you to create a deep connection with nature and the park.

With the park as your backyard, there is always a new adventure to embark on. Swimming, hiking, fishing, rowing, and biking are some of the activities to enjoy while living in a park.

Three red canoes paddling away from the camera towards a distant wooded shore.

Endless sunrises and sunsets and the opportunity to witness once-in-a-lifetime wildlife sightings are some of the main advantages of living in a park.

A Canadian lynx crouching on the forest floorA Canada lynx photographed by park staff, just outside the Neys staff house.

Chance to explore a new region!

Ontario is a big province! Most parks that offer staff home accommodation are located in the northern region of the province.

Living in a staff house allows you to work in a park and experience a new region of Ontario. On your days off, you can play tourist to explore local attractions and other nearby provincial parks.

A person fishing in a lake at sunset.

Parks that offer staff accommodation are typically located near smaller cities or towns and offer limited services. Be sure to research the location of the park and nearby cities/towns before applying for or accepting a position.

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Three photographs of the interior of the staff housing.  The first shows couches on an enclosed porch, the second shows beds in a bedroom, and the last image is of a common room with couches and chairs with a wall-mounted TV.The Sleeping Giant staff accommodation. Staff accommodation varies by park.

Additional benefits

  • Minimum staff rates
  • Often a short drive to work.
  • Opportunity to gain independence
  • Experience living in shared accommodation.

What to expect

  • Living in a remote park
  • Shared or individual rooms
  • Shared living rooms, kitchen and dining room.
  • Access to bathrooms, showers and laundry.
  • Cook your own meals and purchase food (unless the park offers a meal plan)
  • Please bring your own bedding, towels, toiletries and personal items.
  • Exposure to stinging insects.
  • Living in bear country
  • Potentially limited cell service and Wi-Fi access
  • Housekeeping Responsibilities
  • Staff house agreement and rules.

Since lodging varies from park to park, be sure to ask your hiring manager for more detailed information about lodging types, lodging conditions, and what to bring with you.

A large group of people in camping chairs circled around a campfire in a forest clearing as night fell.

Create unforgettable memories

Staying in a staff house is sure to be an unforgettable summer adventure. Immerse yourself in nature and surround yourself with people who share a common purpose.

Apply to one of our parks offering staff house accommodations today!

We are committed to building a workforce that reflects the communities we serve and promoting a diverse, anti-racist, inclusive, accessible, merit-based, respectful and equitable workplace. We invite all interested persons to apply and encourage applications from people with disabilities, Indigenous, Black and racialized people, as well as people from a diversity of ethnic and cultural backgrounds, sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions.

Visit the PAHO Anti-Racism Policy Website and the PAHO Diversity and Inclusion Plan Pages to learn more about OPS’ commitment to promoting racial equity, accessibility, diversity and inclusion in public service.