The Abode Volunteer Experience

Thank you for your interest in the Abode Volunteering Program! Please note that we are operating in a reduced capacity due to the ongoing pandemic and there may be delays in processing/response time. We are greatly appreciative of the support and look forward to connecting soon.

The Program

Connect with your spiritual path and heart-aligned service. Learn and experience Sacred Hospitality, Sufi teachings, mindfulness, meditation, living in community, and connection with nature.


Join the Abode Volunteer Experience working in heart-aligned service at the Abode Retreat Center where you will learn new skills, develop a fluency in Sacred Hospitality, live in community, and have time and support to explore the spiritual dimensions of life. Sacred Hospitality is a core practice at the Abode, stemming from the idea that in serving others from the heart, we serve and develop the sacred in them and in ourselves. It is a practice rooted in the concept of Karma Yoga.

The Abode is a retreat and spiritual center with an interfaith spiritual focus grounded in the universal Sufi message of Hazrat Inayat Khan. Sufism is an ancient mystical tradition rooted in the belief that through prayer and practice, one can connect directly with the divine. We are situated on lands sacred to the Native Mohicans, the Shakers, and the Inayati Sufis. Today our campus holds a working organic horse-powered farm and C.S.A, 350 acres of mountain, field, forest, pond, streams, springs and wetlands to explore. The Abode is crossroads for spiritual traditions, Inayati Sufism, communal life, the arts, food sovereignty, nature connection and Regenerative Design.

Abode Volunteers spend 25 hours per week volunteering for the retreat center, which can include work in the kitchen, guest services, farm, herb gardening, and grounds and maintenance. Applicants may list prior experience and preferences for work concentrations on the volunteer application and we will take this into account in service placements. While living in the community you will have a chance to benefit from a variety of community resources while learning practical, vocational skills.


As a component of the program, Volunteers will also take part in 5 hours a week of spiritual and nature study. Weekly spiritual studies that focus on Sufi and other interfaith spiritual practices, sacred hospitality, and connection to the natural world will be a central part of your volunteer experience. In 2021, much of this study will be self-directed, with opportunities to explore the Abode’s library, classes, and nature.



In Gratitude


Volunteers will receive free room and board during their stay. Depending on availability, housing will either be in shared dormitory-style rooms, or single rooms (where possible on a first-come first-served basis). A vehicle is available for volunteers to use to get to doctor appointments, store runs, and fun field trips. You will also have access to the Meditation Hall. Opportunities for paid work may be available if volunteer hours are met.


If you have any questions, please send an email to Khaldun at [email protected]

Apply Now


The 2021 season will run from mid-March through September, conditions permitting. Volunteers can arrange to stay for a portion or all of the season.



Each volunteer must be able to commit to 25 hours per week throughout the session (with 5 additional hours per week of self-directed spiritual study), plus 3 hours per week of community kitchen “Karma Yoga” cleanup that is required by all community members.


The Volunteer work schedule will vary somewhat throughout the season and week by week. Programs/retreats are often on weekends, but some can run throughout the week. The schedule will be created around the activities at the Retreat Center. An attempt will always be made to give each Volunteer two days off in a row, but please note that this will not always be possible. Scheduled time off is possible, if planned with enough time in advance (and not during a busy program).


The first week of each volunteer’s stay will be an orientation week, with tours, settling into living quarters, and training from the department leaders.  The first two weeks of a Volunteer’s stay is seen as a trial period, followed by a discussion with the Volunteer Coordinator to see if the situation is a good fit for all.  After the first couple of weeks, volunteers may be able to tailor their volunteer work to their skills and interests by coordinating work with department managers.