Get Involved with Shambhala Chicago!
Volunteers make everything that happens at Shambhala possible. Volunteering is a great way to meet people, deepen your meditation practice and build habits that support your practice.
Volunteer Staff participate in the programs they staff free of charge and upon completion of volunteering for the full program, receive a $50 credit toward a future program or class. (Please note, the requirement for staffing Shambhala Training is the completion of the Level 3 and the particular level you are staffing.)
There are also opportunities to work in the office as an occasional support or an ongoing basis. We invite you to give back in whatever way and want to support your practice of generosity. Contact us to find out how you can help: firstname.lastname@example.org
Click on the links below to sign-up via SignUp Genius, or contact us directly.
Class Support, including Shambhala Training Levels, Everyday Life classes, and other classes
- Shambhala Training Level Sign-up: Help create a supported and contemplative environment to new practitioners during Shambhala Training Levels (weekend retreats).
For each date, we will need one coordinator (someone who has staffed a Level before) and at least 2 staff members. The only qualification for all positions is that you have completed Shambhala Training Level 3 and if applicable the Shambhala Training Level for which you want to staff, e.g. completed Level 5 to staff Level 5.
We ask that all staffers be available for the full program. Please note in the comments what your availability is. The date posted in the sign-up is the first date of the applicable retreat. Levels 1, 4, and 5 start on Friday night; Levels 2 and 3 start on Saturdays.
Open House Support
- Sunday Morning Open Houses sign-up: Any spontaneous help is appreciated, but signing up in advance helps us plan staffing better.
Feel free to choose any slot that you are qualified for. Timekeepers/Umdzes and Gatekeepers are trained positions, but by signing up at least 3 weeks in advance, we can schedule time to train you how to hold these positions.
- Sunday Evening Queer Dharma sign-up: Any spontaneous help is appreciated, but signing up in advance helps us plan staffing better.
- Tuesday Evening Open House (West Loop): Serving in a ROTA position not only makes these offerings possible but it is also a way for all of us to deepen our practice, on and off the cushion. While it is preferred that you serve in a role consistently for a period of time (suggested in 3 months), it is not mandatory. If you require training as a Timekeeper or Gatekeeper, please contact us.
- Weeknight 30-Minute Group Sitting: We have expanded our weekday hours to accommodate the community after work. Monday – Friday we hold evening group sitting from 6 – 6:30PM. Because this sitting mimics our weekday noon sitting, no meditation instruction is given and no chants are read, which means anyone can keep time for this session.
Should you wish to volunteer, we only ask that you arrive 15 minutes prior in case set-up is needed. Other than that, it is an opportunity to practice with other participants equally.
Administrative and Main Center Support
- Admin Assistance: Opportunities are available 5 days a week and can be performed on- or off-site. Duties may include timekeeping for noon sitting, bookstore management, communications, facilities, scheduling, and others as assigned. Shifts are parsed out in 2-hour segments.