Who we are
We are a yoga and meditation retreat centre located at the foot of the Royal National Park, one of the oldest natural reserves in the world. We hire our facilities to guests, so they can immerse themselves in nature as part of a retreat experience.
As a community we are also active practitioners of yoga and meditation. This enables us to create an environment unique in its ability to support those seeking spiritual and material rejuvenation. Our personal practices include an early morning program of kirtan (devotional chants), mantra meditation and philosophy. We also have regular evening programs, festivals and community celebrations.
As a retreat centre we are happy to accommodate groups from any type of background, however our personal affiliation is with the Krishna community.
When volunteering, you are more than welcome to participate in our community and devotional practices as much or as little as you like – you are not expected to! We are simply looking for happy and enthusiastic people who are keen to learn new skills and serve as members of our work/exchange program.
Where can you help
- House keeping
- Grounds maintenance
- Building and construction
- Social Media
- Website design
Even though people from many different countries make up the staff of Govinda Valley, we can only accept volunteers with a good grasp of the English language!
There are separate living sections for females and males. The rooms are basic and can fit from two to four people. It is very important to keep the rooms tidy and neat especially when sharing the space with others. At times we also provide tents, especially when we have more volunteers.
What you will need to bring
- Good solid working shoes for the garden
- Suitable clothes for weather conditions
- A positive attitude and a smile is a must :)
What to expect
As a project based on the principles of yoga we expect – for the time you are with us – that you will share in our spiritual ethos and observe the following standards with respect to diet, dress, behaviour, etc.
- No eating meat, fish or egg
- No intoxication (including Drugs, alcohol, cigarettes or other addictive substances)*, no pets
- Modest and appropriate dress (e.g. yoga pants and tights are only for doing yoga not for working)
- A good work ethic under the direction of our regular staff
- Being always conscious of the comfort and convenience of other staff, guests or volunteers (no unreasonably late nights, no excessive noise, respect for each other’s space and privacy, etc)
Please note: When it comes to any illegal or illicit activities such as substance abuse, sexual harassment, bullying, etc, we have a zero tolerance policy. Any infractions in this regard will result in your immediate departure from our project. There will be no negotiation on this point.
How long can you stay here?
We prefer that people stay one month or longer if we are both happy with the arrangement. However exceptions to this time frame can be discussed.
After two weeks we will review your situation. Assuming we are happy with you and you are happy with us you may be invited to stay longer. There is no real limit on how long you may be allowed to stay but we will review things periodically to see how things are working out. As in any relationship, it will ultimately depend on our mutual experience and on the degree to which we share certain values, visions and ideals.
All this said, we are very accepting of all kinds of people and we welcome you to be yourself and add your own flavour to our community. We believe this is a wonderful project combining a materially healthy business with a process of spiritual upliftment. We believe that through the practice of yoga and the transformative power of volunteer service we can not only find personal fulfillment but contribute greatly to a much needed general improvement in the social and environmental spheres of life. We aim especially to provide and facilitate the younger generations in taking up a leadership role, not only in this project but in society as a whole. We are confident your time here with us will be enjoyable, as well as truly adventurous and an extraordinary life experience.
Cultural exchange and learning opportunities
- Secure and comfortable share accommodation
- Fantastic food
- Great new friends
- The opportunity to live in our beautiful retreat environment and amongst the wild life
- Weekly kirtan (singing meditation) nights
- Daily morning meditation and philosophy classes
- Hatha yoga classes according to availability of teachers and students
- Group day trips to waterfalls and beaches in the warmer months
- An overall experience to be remembered.
Volunteers have the opportunity to learn about Bhakti Yoga and what it can add to their quality of everyday experience; through service, singing and dancing, healthy vegeterian food, early nights, yoga asana practice, and being part of community life.
Volunteering hours expected
About 5 hours, 5 days a week flexible (25hours per week min). From Jan 2018 our volunteer hours will increase to 6h, 5 days a week.
Involved in our charity
Govinda Valley is a project of the Caring for Life charity, a welfare organisation to increase awareness and well-being in the community.
For Caring for Life we are looking for volunteers to help maintain a house where people who work for the charity live. We are also looking for collectors who can fundraise for the charity. Payment for collectors is commission based. For either function you can contact Patrick.
If you were to volunteer or work for the charity similar principles apply than if you were to volunteer at Govinda Valley. This is a very unique and interesting opportunity to help a grass roots Sydney charity grow and expand. For the house we are looking for males. Female can apply for a similar opportunity but from Govinda Valley retreat.
It is the policy of this organization to provide equal opportunities without regard to race, colour, religion, national origin, gender, sexual preference, age or disability.