COMMUNITY UPDATE

The fact that things change does not mean we lose something. Rather, it is a sign that we have new opportunities and new options. The opportunities available to us are inexhaustible and limitless, and are arising continuously. ~Karmapa 17

March 31, 2019

Dear Friends,

Our mission has always been to offer Buddhist practices with integrity and heart in an accessible and affordable way. To remain true to this intention, we've spent the past few months in contemplation and reflection on the most skillful way forward for our community. With the lease on our space ending on May 31, and the real estate market in NYC being what it is, we've concluded that the wisest and most sustainable path is for us to focus our resources on what we do best - developing and teaching meditation teachers.

Since 2011, we've graduated 148 teachers from our Meditation Teacher Training program, and fifteen more are participating in this year's cohort, which is now accredited by the International Mindfulness Teachers Association. In 2017 we began our Teaching Mindfulness to Children training, through which 24 people have graduated, and the next program will begin in September and take place at One Circle Wellness (details at this link). In April, we're offering our first professional development weekend workshop, to support meditation teachers and guides of any tradition (details at this link).

Beginning June 1, IDP will be offering our Teacher Training Programs at various locations in NYC. We will no longer offer regular meditations and events from a central location, nor will we have paid staff members. With our streamlined offerings and schedule, we'll be able to run the center solely through the efforts of volunteers, which includes ourselves. 

Our Monthly Membership will continue to support the costs of running our organization, as well as enabling our commitment to keeping tuition low, offering PoC scholarships, and awarding financial aid to those with need. Our basic operational costs will be approximately $1000/month, which includes website hosting, business insurance, annual accounting fees and other administrative costs. Additional fees will be necessary for space rental, administrative costs of programming, and teacher honorariums, which we plan to cover with tuition and registration fees. 

Going forward, we'd like to share our network with our Monthly Members. Beginning June 1, Monthly Members of $20/month or more are welcome to post meditation, mindfulness, or Buddhist-related events on our calendar, where they can be viewed by everyone visiting our website. Details are at this link. We'll also let you know where our current teachers' upcoming events and programs will be held, so you can continue studying and practicing with our community.  

We know these changes may be upsetting to some of you. But as practitioners, we understand that change is natural, and what's exciting to us about this direction is that it allows us to do what we do best in an accessible way and in accord with our values. We're proud and grateful for our community's contribution to the dharma throughout our history, and look forward to continuing our efforts with wisdom and compassion for the benefit of all beings.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact us. 

With gratitude,

The IDP Board of Directors

Kimberly Brown

Tarikh Korula

Lani Rowe

Angela Russo

Larry Yang