Rangjung Yeshe Gomde California welcomes children under 18 on the land during certain programs and supports parent sponsored cooperative care. Because the land can be rugged and dangerous, children must be supervised at all times and abide by all Gomde policies. We offer different childcare options depending on the size of the retreat, ranging from shared parental care to parent-hired caretakers. If you are interested in bringing your child to Gomde during a program, you MUST contact Kerry Meath, our Childcare Coordinator, AND fill out the appropriate information online registration information one month prior to your retreat so the parent committee can make appropriate preparation.
Parents and/or a designated caretaker are responsible for keeping their children safe and knowing where they are at all times. It is also the parents’ responsibility to make any other childcare arrangements, including the hiring of additional caretakers. Gomde staff is not available to provide childcare. Per Gomde policy, one caretaker is required for every four children, and infants and children under 3 should have their own caretaker separate from those supervising older children.
Children under the age of 13 are not encouraged to attend teachings except under special circumstances. If children are to join teachings sessions, they are expected to behave and remain quite. Parents must remove children when they are fussy or disruptive. Parents are responsible for supervising their children in the shrine rooms and Buddha Hall as there are many precious items in cabinets and on the altars. Children are not allowed during restricted programs and any others determined by our teachers not to be appropriate for children. During restricted programs children are allowed on the land but are restricted from the Buddha hall and its vicinity.
Children are welcome to eat in the dining tent. During some programs the dining is designated as a silent area. If silence is required, children can eat in the dining tent in silence or they and their families can use separate picnic tables set up near the dining tent. As our kitchen and storage facilities are very limited, we do not permit any participants to use the main kitchen to prepare their own food or store items in our pantry and refrigerators. Children are expected to eat what the kitchen has prepared.
It is very challenging for small children to walk several times per day between the campground and dining hall. This should be taken into consideration when making lodging plans.
Parents assume all responsibility for the child’s health (and their own) while at Gomde. Hazard forms must be signed by parents to include their children.
What to Bring?
Parents are required to provide children with adequate clothing, sunscreen, bug repellent, and other forms of protection to keep them safe. Children at the river must be supervised at all time and small children should have some form of swimming life vest or support. River shoes are also encouraged for children.
Cost for Children (food and camping)
Infants and toddler 0-3: No charge.
3-12 years of age: $8 per day.
13-18 years of age: $20 per day.
Caretaker fees –food only: $10 per day.
Caretaker fees – food and camping: $20 per day.
*Please note: caretaker fees DO NOT include access to teachings.