What is the work-study volunteer program?
How much will I have to work?
Where will I live?
How much will I get to study the Dharma?
Am I a good candidate?
What do I need to bring?
How do I apply?
Joining a Community
In the months of May through September we welcome work-study candidates onto our team.
Work-study Volunteering is an excellent opportunity for you to help support the Dharma and to experience community life.
Vajrapani Institute is the perfect place for embarking on or deepening your spiritual practice. The land here has received many blessings over the years from visiting Lamas, which, combined with the natural peace of our remote mountain setting, makes Vajrapani an excellent base for focusing on your spiritual path.
"I feel as if I have found a precious little oasis, where I have the opportunity to work, study and practice amidst an enchanting redwood forest. The atmosphere is one of tranquility and serenity, which I find are very good conditions to cultivate a peaceful mind. Serving a Buddhist community feels very rewarding.” – Cristian
Working at a Dharma Center
Work-study candidates are asked to work 25 hours a week in exchange for food, teachings, and camping space.
Work may include cleaning, kitchen help, office work, grounds keeping, or whatever else is needed at a given time. You will be the go-to person for an extra hand. Have a special vocational skill? Please let us know. We can always use skilled help on various projects.
Living in the Forest
Camping is the main option for work-study participants. We have a number of private campsites. Occasionally a housing option may open up, but this is fairly rare.
The weather from May to September is usually quite warm and temperate.
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Study the Dharma
Our staff and work-study participants are welcome to attend any of our programs if there isn’t pressing work to be done at the time. Make sure to mention ahead of time what programs you are most interested in so we can try to make arrangements for you to attend. We have an extensive library with many out-of-print books, as well as a video library of teachings and documentaries. We have senior practitioners on the land and on staff that are available for interviews and discussions.
What we’re looking for
Work-study candidates should have:
- Flexibility – To handle changing tasks and schedules
- Generosity – An attitude of wanting to put others’ needs first
- Reliability – Keeping agreements and following through on tasks
- Independence – Comfort with self-management and solitude
What to bring
You will likely want to have your own car. Vajrapani does not provide transportation and is a 25-mile drive away from the nearest town.
Other essential items:
- Sleeping bag & pillow
- Hiking / Work shoes
- Warm clothes
This is not an exhaustive list. If there are other things that will make you comfortable in the woods, please be sure to bring them.
How to Apply
1. Download the Application Form
2. Email your application to our Assistant Director, Betty Chan, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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