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Nepal monastery experience

Trip Overview

Nepal, the birthplace of Gautam Buddha, offers a unique and spiritual experience for volunteers interested in teaching and assisting Buddhist monks. Living within the monastery accommodation, you'll engage in teaching sessions with monks in the morning or afternoon, depending on the monastery's schedule.

Patience is key, as monks participate in regular Buddhist pujas and classes. Your commitment to teaching will involve collaboration with fellow volunteers to establish a flexible class system that maintains student interest amidst frequent schedule changes. Your impact as a volunteer hinges on your motivation to understand the monks as individuals and learners. The teaching duration is 2 to 3 hours a day, catering to monks aged 6 to 20 years old. The teaching Buddhist monks volunteer program operates year-round, but due to religious ceremonies and pujas at the monastery, classes may be interrupted. Volunteers are welcome to join these religious events. The program duration ranges from 1 to 20 weeks.

In addition to teaching, take the opportunity to organize recreational activities for the monks, contributing to their understanding of the outside world. Be mindful that despite their monastic life, the monks are regular individuals, and your true impact lies in fostering genuine relationships.

Trip Highlights

Kathmandu Sightseeing: Begin your journey exploring the historical and vibrant city of Kathmandu.
Buddhist Immersion: Immerse in teachings, rituals, and monastery life.
Teach and Learn: Contribute to monk education while expanding personal knowledge.
Monastic Living: Reside in serene surroundings, gaining insights into daily routines.
Participate and Explore: Engage in traditional events and rituals while discovering Nepal's beauty.

Safety and Support

Your well-being is our top priority. At VCD Nepal, we value the safety of our volunteers above all else. Our local coordinator and VCD team are dedicated to looking after you and ensuring that you stay safe, comfortable, and healthy throughout your time in Nepal. From the moment you arrive at the airport, our coordinator will be available to assist you with anything you may need. We provide a detailed orientation process as soon as you arrive in the country, ensuring that you are well-prepared for your volunteer experience.

Arrival Information

Upon your program start date, arrive at Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA). Look for a VCD Nepal coordinator holding a sign with your name, making it easy for you to spot them. They'll guide you to your accommodation, ensuring a smooth transition to your volunteer experience in Nepal.

Accommodation & Meals

During your first few days in Kathmandu for orientation, you'll stay with a local host family or at a nearby guest house/hotel. The rooms are basic but comfortable, equipped with Western-style toilets, hot water, and free WiFi.

Once your volunteer placement begins, you'll be accommodated in the monastery where you're assigned. Shared rooms with basic furnishings provide an authentic monastery experience. Bathroom facilities are shared among 3-5 people, and while bedding is provided, bringing a sleeping bag may be advisable, especially during cooler months.

Meals are provided at the monastery, including breakfast at 9 am and dinner at 7 pm. The cuisine mainly consists of Nepali dal/bhat (lentil soup, rice, and vegetables). However, you'll need to arrange lunch and snacks independently.

Please note that while efforts are made to accommodate dietary restrictions, some specific requirements may not be feasible on this trip. If you have any concerns, please discuss them with a travel advisor.

Upon Arrival Orientation

Upon arrival, you'll undergo orientation to familiarize yourself with daily life in Nepal. You'll spend a couple of days at a host family or local hotel, meeting fellow volunteers, and adjusting after your flight. You'll have the chance to try local food and get ready for your placement. During orientation, you'll receive:

Language lessons
Information about cultural and gender issues in Nepal
Details about your placement
Insights into teaching English in Nepal
Introduction to Nepalese cuisine

A Kathmandu city tour, including famous sites like Swayambhunath Stupa, Boudhanath Stupa, and Pashupatinath Temple. This orientation ensures you're well-prepared to begin your volunteer work and immerse yourself in Nepali culture.

Volunteer placement

Your volunteer placement journey begins with a scenic public bus ride, offering a glimpse into local life. Upon arrival, you'll be guided to one of our monastery placements in Kathmandu, Chitwan, or Pokhara. There, you'll teach English to young monks aged 8 to 20 and engage in evening activities to connect with them. You'll also join in their prayer sessions, gaining insight into Nepal's sacred traditions. Living in the monastery immerses you in Nepalese culture, and you'll have free time to explore nearby villages and towns. Excursions to other destinations are available upon inquiry with the local team.

A typical day at the monastery

A typical day at the monastery begins with your arrival at the placement. You'll be given a tour of the monastery and time to settle in before starting lessons the following day. Each morning starts with a traditional Nepalese breakfast, followed by 2-3 hours of teaching English to the young monks from Monday to Friday. Outside of teaching hours, you can assist in various areas of the monastery, such as the kitchen or library. Evenings are filled with fun activities organized for the monks, providing opportunities for bonding and enjoyment. Overall, your day at the monastery is a blend of teaching, learning, and engaging with the vibrant community.

Weekends & Free Time Activities

Explore the breathtaking adventure activities that Nepal has to offer during your free time, including trekking, hiking, paragliding, white water rafting, and more. Ask for assistance with VCD Nepal  team member. They will help to organize it for you.

Program fee

Experience the Nepal monastery journey starting from just $250, inclusive of accommodation, meals, and project support.

1 week    $250
2 weeks $400
3 weeks $500
4 weeks $600
5 weeks $700
6 weeks $800
7 weeks $900
8 weeks $1000
Additional week $100

Program Duration

The teaching abroad Nepal Program operates throughout the year, offering flexible durations ranging from 1 to 20 weeks. Please note that the local festivals, winter holidays and exams may impact the regular class schedule.

Monastery Location

Kathmandu, Chitwan and Pokhara

Included

  • Airport transfers

  • Accommodation and meals
  • Language and cultural orientation

  • Public transportation to and from the monastery

  • Sightseeing around Kathmandu

  • 24/7 Emergency support

Excluded

  • Flights

  • Travel insurance

  • Visa
fees
  • Sightseeing entrance fees


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VCD Nepal is a non-profit volunteer organization based in Nepal that connects local communities with international volunteers to provide education, healthcare, sanitation, and environmental services.

Address

Thamel Kathmandu, Nepal

Phone

+977 9851034934

Email