The Centre is humming. Wangapeka continues to offer a wide range of courses and retreats giving people different access points to the dharma (e.g. the short and often topical weekend workshops through to the month-long meditation retreats).
All sorts of people continue to find their way here whether through word of mouth, looking at our excellent website or by some other avenue. Overall the Centre is in a very healthy position programme wise due to the work of many willing hands.
From struggling to fill the Centre a few years ago, the Trust is now in the unusual position of being faced with some challenging decisions about priorities regarding bookings; and at times actually unable to meet everyone’s requests. On the plus side perhaps it is wonderful thing that the Wangapeka is so popular!
This situation has led the Programmes Committee, with advice from Elders and agreement from the BOT, to trial a new system for those booking the Centre in 2019 rather than the first come first served that we have been working with. As well as keeping strongly in mind the need to provide a programme that honours the Vision of the Wangapeka. Submissions were sought from those wishing to run courses / retreats in 2019 and thirty one requests were received for the period from mid-June to the end of December. The first part of next year is booked for longer meditation retreats and courses led by Bonni, Lama Mark, Leander and Jangchub (who is visiting with students from the Centre in Brazil where Tarchin spent some time recently -this is a new this initiative and link between the Centres). Time has been set aside in the programme for Centre preparation before courses and for much needed maintenance at Wangapeka. Tarchin was asked to teach however was unable to commit at the time. The 2019 programme will be published shortly and will be open to feedback. The new booking process may continue to shape future programming decisions at the Centre in the years to come, depending on what happens regarding the 2019 programme.
What else has the Programmes Committee been involved in?
- working with Faith (the Wangapeka Office Caretaker) on various policies and processes to ensure the smooth running of our very full and varied programme of retreats. Faith has also developed a couple of information booklets for those running courses/retreats at the Centre which will really help course managers understand their role in the smooth running of retreats. (Thank you Faith!)
- The continued development of the Weekend “winter” Workshops – five of these were planned for 2018 and already a couple of these have been completed in July. Anecdotal reports from 2017 were positive in terms of the smooth and harmonious management of Bodhiseeds and the Weekend Workshops running concurrently so this is due to happen again in August 2018. (Thank you Jane for the massive work you have put into these weekends)
- clarifying and then documenting what is required from people in key roles on courses at Wangapeka, such as the course manager – a WET-required and pivotal role for the well-functioning of all courses. Clarity of expectations around these roles has helped enormously. Good will and effort from all sides, often behind the scenes, has helped the Centre function well, enabling so many retreats and courses to take place.
We appreciate all who have attended or offered courses and given dana in all its manifestations at Wangapeka. It is a wonderful thing to see the change in peoples’ faces as they leave the Centre after a course here. Wangapeka is truly a place of deep healing in this increasingly polarised world.
May the Wangapeka continue to flourish for the benefit of all.
Mark and Jane