Resident Volunteer Staff at the Dharmakaya Center for Wellbeing

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Dharmakaya Center for Wellbeing



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Resident Volunteer Staff at the Dharmakaya Center for Wellbeing

  • Marker details

    The Dharmakaya Center for Wellbeing is a nonprofit meditation retreat center dedicated to cultivating physical and emotional wellbeing in all. We rely on volunteer support for all our operations, and we would be happy for you to join us. You will find it’s an opportunity both to give back through service, and to deepen your own personal development.

    In our intimate setting (we can accommodate no more than 30 retreatants at a time), volunteers work closely with teachers and senior practitioners to bring extraordinary programs to our guests. Together we create an experience that has the potential to transform lives.

    In exchange for 6-8 hours of work a day, you receive:
    • A free room private bedroom with shared bath
    • Three delicious, vegetarian meals a day from our gourmet farm-to-table kitchen
    • Daily community practice through our morning salutation and meditation program
    • Twice weekly group instruction and practice through our Sunday and Tuesday mediation programs
    • Unparalleled access to our teachers
    • Free attendance at most Dharmakaya-produced programs, schedule permitting

    Much of our work is manual labor. Typically, your responsibilities will be in housekeeping, garden/grounds, or the kitchen (sometimes all three), although you may also help run programs or take on special projects. Everyone helps with dish washing.

    Kitchen duties: Tasks include assisting the chef with food preparation, organizing supplies in the pantry and refrigerators, washing pots and pans, and cleaning up the kitchen and serving areas.

    Facilities and Grounds: Warm-weather tasks include gardening, lawn and trail maintenance, and tree husbandry, as well as projects like window washing. Work during the winter months includes snow removal. Year around we keep the systems running and buildings in good repair. Maintenance and landscaping experience is preferred (though not required), but you must be able to do physical labor in variable weather conditions.

    Housekeeping: Tasks range from making beds and doing laundry to washing floors and windows in order to keep our common spaces, bedrooms, bathrooms, storage areas and offices clean and in order. We welcome an appreciation for cleanliness and order—and attention to detail.

    Both tasks and workloads vary from week to week, depending on the programs we are running and the number of guests who are coming. Each week we create a schedule so that work is distributed evenly, and no one is overwhelmed. We work as a team, helping each other and ensuring that all the tasks are done. The number of longstanding and repeat volunteers we receive speaks to the power of their experience with us.
  • LocationUnited States, New York, Ulster County, Ellenville

  • Work
  • Type of work Cooking / Shopping
    General maintenance
    Help in the house
    Helping with tourists
  • Hours per day Generally you will work 6-8 hours total throughout the day. Typically work is during the day, but there are always dinner dishes!
  • Work requirements: We seek volunteers who are professional and committed to providing exemplary service. Every interaction you have with retreatants, teachers and colleagues impacts the overall Dharmakaya experience—including yours.

    • Enthusiastic, resilient and thoughtful demeanor
    • Physical, mental and emotional stability
    • The desire and ability to fulfill your commitment
    • The discipline to commit to a schedule or process, including timeliness
    • Strong aspiration and openness to learn
    • An established meditation practice or strong intention to establish one
    • The ability to take direction
    • Flexibility
    • A friendly helpful manner towards guests, volunteers, staff and vendors
    • The ability to live and work in in close proximity to others and to participate in community life
    • A commitment to our values and code of conduct (no meat, alcohol, tobacco or recreational drugs on campus)
    • 18 years or older
    • A sense of humor is also helpful.
  • Host's preferences
  • Availability: Send a message to inquire.
  • Duration of stay: You are encouraged to stay for a season and in most cases must commit to a minimum stay of one month.
  • Maximum number of helpers: 4
  • Last minute requests: Not okay
  • Host
  • Languages:English
  • Has pets? There are no animals on campus
  • Smokes at home? No
  • Accommodation: You will have a private room with double bed, desk and chair; there is a shared bath.
  • Additional info
  • Perched atop a hill amid 90 acres of woods—a deeply spiritual setting—the Dharmakaya Center for Wellbeing is a sacred space in a busy world, a place of solitude and regeneration. Our mission is to provide a wide range of practices drawn from ancient wisdom, for all levels of interest, in order to cultivate physical and emotional wellbeing in the greatest number of people.

    Our programs range from traditional teachings by very high Buddhist lamas to yoga and qi gong to more secular mindfulness-based programs. People also join us on personal retreat. With room for about 30 guests, the experience is always quite intimate, and guests, volunteers and staff mix freely.

    Nearby hiking trails provide opportunities for downtime exploration.