Volunteer Opportunities

Bodhisattva Actions


Do you do volunteer work in the community that could use more hands?  Do you know of volunteer opportunities that strengthen lovingkindness and compassion?  Send a description and your contact information to Nalanda and we will solicit volunteers who want to engage in a new bodhisattva practice.  Below are some suggetions offered by members.


Create and distribut posters around town for our Center.  Drop a note to Nalanda if you can help!

Recording & Posting Teachings

Sound recording and adding recordings to our website.  Currently we have a backlog of recordings of teachings and such, and could use help from a technically skilled volunteer to take this on long-term.

Drop a note to Nalanda if you can help!

Keep Nalanda's Grounds Looking Good

With spring and summer in the air, the grounds at Nalanda draw more attention.  Contact Claire if you are interested in helping with the garden.

Are You a Graphic Artist?

If you are skilled with computer graphics, and would like to donate some assistance to Nalanda, please drop a line to Jan at Nalanda.

Dispute Resolution Center Mediation Trainings

The Dispute Resolution Center of Thurston County offers a series of beginning and advanced trainings in mediation for people interested in learning the philosophy, process, and practice of community mediation. Scholarships are available for this year's 40-hour professional mediation trainings. See Dispute Resolution.

Music Mends Minds

Senior Services for South Sound and Olympia Rotary Club are teaming up to develop a Music Mends Minds band to perform weekly at the Olympia Senior Center.  If you can make music you can participate.

To learn more, contact Eileen at Senior Services or call 360-586-6181 ext 104

No One Dies Alone Volunteer Companion Program

Three Nalanda members currently volunteer for this program through Providence, providing vigils or reassuring bedside companionship to those who might otherwise die alone.  To learn more, talk to Claire or call Providence Spiritual Care at 360-493-7240.  A training is required.

Hospice Volunteer Training

Providence Hospice Volunteers must attend training sessions. The training covers hospice philosophy and end of life education. Volunteers interact with patients and families in many creative ways to enhance their lives. You can work close to where you live.

To learn more, contact Hospice Volunteer Services at 360-493-4689
or email: Hospice Volunteer.

Washington Correction Center (Shelton) Prison Dharma Outreach

Join other Buddhist volunteers who offer meditation & dharma teachings on the 3rd Sunday each month from 12:30-2:30pm or also on the 1st Friday from 6:30-8:00pm.  Three inmates who have completed a year-long training will begin teaching Prison Mindfulness Institute‚Äôs Path of Freedom program  They will be the first men behind bars certified to facilitate this program for other inmates.  To date this program has been taught only by outside volunteers.  However, this historic undertaking is dependent on gaining access to classroom space which requires 2 outside volunteers to be present during their class.  They desperately need a core of folks who will show up once a month or once every 6 weeks or only on an emergency basis when a scheduled volunteer has another commitment or is ill.

For further info: contact Gache at (360) 310-7454
or email: Gache or Chaimyung

Crisis Clinic

The Crisis Clinic uses volunteers to provide a listening ear, or help to those needing resources or information.  Check their website, or call 360-586-2800.

Interfaith Works

Interfaith Works -- of which Nalanda is a member -- has several activities that could use volunteer help, such as the annual homeless census.  Check their "Selections! IW Community Calendar.  One additional click is necessary to download the calendar.

Community Care Center

SideWalk aims to end homelessness, and partners with Interfaith Works and other organizations at the Providence Community Care Center.  Volunteers are needed in many capacities, and training is provided.  Contact Sidewalk

Thurston County Food Bank

From packing groceries to picking produce, and more!  Volunteer daytime shifts are available nearly every day of the week, with two evenings per month and limited seasonal opportunities on weekends.

The best way for individuals to start is to attend a Volunteer Orientation and Tour, which are held the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of every month from 3 - 4 PM (so Dec. 19, Jan. 2 and 16, etc.).

Volunteer coordinator is Jen Butti. Call (360) 352-8597 ext. 107
or email: Food Bank Volunteers
220 Thurston Av NE (downtown Oly)

Olympia Parks

The Volunteer in Parks program is a great way to learn about Olympia's parks and help them stay healthy and beautiful.  A good entry point is to join a work party--all abilities welcome.  For exapmple in December, work parties occured at Ellis Cove in Priest Point Park, Yashiro Japanese Garden, the Springwood Parcel (formerly Zabel's rhododendron garden), and West Bay Park.  Tools, gloves and some refreshments are provided.  For work parties, dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes or boots that can get wet and muddy.  This could be a good family activity because all ages are welcome, but there are special requirements for those under age 18.

Check the Parks webpage. That website also has a link to Upcoming Work Parties.  Email Jan Vleck about his experience.

Volunteer at Nalanda!

Ongoing volunteers are needed for routine maintenance, moderate-skill improvement projects, publicity for events, setting up/taking down for events, annual retreat committee, other event committees.

Email Bob Saunders or Jan Vleck at Nalanda.