The work of maintaining our building and programs at Red Cedar Zen Community is performed by volunteers organized into several workgroups. Each workgroup has its own set of pages within the website that can be used for conducting business. Following is a current list of workgroups, along with a description of each. The name of each workgroup is a link to its workgroup home page. In some cases the workgroup's pages are available only to members of that group.
If you are a member of Red Cedar Zen Community and are interested in participating in one or more of these workgroups, simply login and check the relevant checkboxes in your member profile. If your are not a member, please consider becoming one.
Additional Information for each group
The following content, if still applicable, could possibly be moved to the home page for each workgroup:
The Outreach Workgroup
This workgroup works to make our way of practice visible to the community.
Publications: Outreach needs techies who know
desktop publishing, file formats, and a variety of data storage
techniques (flash drive, CD, upload to internet, etc). These volunteers
would produces all print media for outreach, including brochures,
posters, postcard-sized advertisements, and possibly larger "signage".
They could use someone with photography skills who knows photo editing
software and sites. Outreach needs someone who is able to devote time to
running "print errands" to and from Copy Source or other print outlets.
Breaking news: Barb Crowley is getting started on this job.
Media Contact: These volunteers maintain regular
listings (press releases) on Bellingham Herald, Skagit Valley Herald,
Cascadia Weekly, KVOS community TV, KUGS (Western's radio station). Joan
Dow is currently doing this, thank you Joan!
Brochure/Poster Distribution: Whatcom County is
big and Outreach needs people to distribute posters and handbills to the
community. Outreach can use a lead person and many helpers. Posters
need to be distributed only about twice per year. Although brochure
distribution is on-going, a volunteer needs to check sites only
periodically to re-stock. Joan is currently distributing brochures.
There is a worksheet to help with poster distribution.
Special Projects: This is a job for creative
types who will think of different events and community opportunities to
let the broader community know about our sangha. A recent example is the
display at the Bellingham Public Library. In the future we could have a
presence at WWU's annual fall information fair, or other community
Outreach Needs Summary: another person to help with poster/brochure distribution, one person to take on media contact work.
The Welcome Workgroup
The Welcome workgroup works to make the Dharma Hall and Sangha activities as welcoming and sense-making as possible for new people. The workgroup handles incoming communication and contact from visitors.
Welcoming People at the Hall: Welcome Volunteers
will find much of the guidance they need to succeed in the Welcome
Guidelines binder in the hall lobby. These guidelines are also posted
on the Welcome Workgroup page of the forum. Welcome Coverage times
include Monday, Wednesday, and Friday Noon zazen, and Wednesday Evening
service. There are several trained volunteers already, but it is quite
demanding to "cover" every service, week after week, so the more folks
who volunteer to be trained, the better. Currently, Christa Simmons,
Fran Hecht, and Marilyn Kratt are sharing the noon welcoming. Wednesday
evening is being handled by Kathy McKenna and John Wiley. Someone at
the zendo you don't recognize? Introduce yourself and ask if they've
been welcomed. All sangha members are encouraged to review the Welcome
CD Production: When new members are welcomed we
offer them a CD complete with one of Tim's Dharma talks. Making CDs is
easy to learn, easy to do, and we now have a relationship with a local
vendor. We supply the audio files and art, but some computer skills
needed to do this task.
Welcome Emails: This can be done from any email
account! Just use the email addresses provided by new visitors to the
hall to send them an already written welcome letter. You just copy it
and paste it into the email to them, and hit send! We get positive
feedback from those who have been welcomed in this way. Currently Fran
and Christa are sending welcome emails.
Dharma Hall Voice Mail: When someone calls the hall, voice mails are transcribed and emailed to this volunteer. Thank you, Bernadette Prinster for currently handling this task. About 3-5 calls come in per week. Most callers are asking for meditation instruction. Some ask about renting the building. This volunteer will return calls to folks, when appropriate; but often this volunteer simply forwards the transcription to the appropriate workgroup for their follow-up.
General Email Contact: Check, respond and route emails sent to our general email@example.com email
address. Currently this task is being handled by Kathy McKenna in
Membership Workgroup as much email to this address is about membership.
She likes doing it, but others can train as back up.
Adding Names to database: Access the RCZC database
(codes provided!) and perform simple data entry of information provided
by visitors on our visitor email data sheet. This provides the critical
link between "welcome" and "membership". Fran and Christa again, thank
Welcome Needs Summary: another person or two ongoing to fill in and help with welcoming people at the Hall.
The Zendo & Programs Workgroup
The Zendo & Programs workgroup runs the
programs and special events of the sangha. This workgroup includes some
traditional Zen monastic positions for which we use the Japanese
names. The Spiritual Director (Tim Burnett) is the board member who
supports the work of the Zendo, Programs, and Practice Workgroups. He
can be reached at Tim@redcedarzen.org if you have questions about working in one of these workgroups.
Ino (zendo coordinator): The Ino is the host and
leader in the zendo. The new Ino is Latona Maillard, taking the role of
John Keith who is continuing as Assistant Ino. Thank you John and Latona
for your leadership in the zendo!
Chiden (altar cleaning): Terry Wissler is lead Chiden currently with Karen McMains on backup and specializing in flowers. Marilyn Kratt has volunteered to act as Chiden for the lobby altar. Chiden could use one more person on backup and to be trained in the chiden’s arts.
Tenzo (cooking): Chris Burkhart is the head Tenzo
this year and a real pioneer moving us into doing oryoki consistently at
sesshin and some regular Saturday programs. Helpers have been: Fran
Hecht and Koelle Bodhi. The Tenzo needs aback up/trainee Tenzo to fill
in as needed and a lead Tenzo to coordinate the October 10-11, 2009
Study Retreat with Norman. Lunch is traditionally served at this
Retreat Manager: Tim continues to cover as Retreat Manager. Tim would love to train a Retreat Manager apprentice – One person to be understudy to eventually be Retreat Manager. Retreat Manager is the head organizer of the retreat, acts as point person for the facility, and coordinates with other leaders (Ino, Tenzo, etc.). It is helpful if this person can attend all of the major retreats during the year. Interested in this job? Plenty of support is available.
Registrar: Karen McMains and Barb Crowley are now
sharing the important job of Registrar. Thank you Karen and Barb! Karen
and Barb are working to develop a detailed job description and to
streamline the process. If you interested in being registrar in future
it would helpful to "apprentice" with Karen and Barb. This is a
demanding job and we like to rotate it regularly.
Materials Coordinator: The Zendo Workgroup needs
one person to work with Retreat Manager to organize our plastic tubs,
ensure we have all supplies needed for retreats, and get our gear to the
site. There are written lists of materials and labeled plastic tubs.
Tim will assist and consult.
Zendo & Programs Needs Summary: One person to apprentice with Tim as Assistant Retreat Manager, one person to serve as Materials Coordinator.
The Practice Committee is formed of the former
shuso’s (head students at practice period) which includes Tim as priest
and Spiritual Director, the Ino and/or Assistant Ino, plus zendo hosts
for the noon programs. Presently this is Tim Burnett, Nancy Welch, John
Wiley, John Keith, Latona Maillard, and Edie Norton. The Practice
Committee guides the forms and feelings of our practice. We’ve just had
our first meeting to discuss overall feeling and approach to practice in
the sangha and some general program planning. Overall sense is that
things are going well. A shift in the organization chart is it makes
sense for the Practice Committee to do event planning as talking about
the feeling in the zendo leads naturally to what we actually do there.
So you might notice that the “Event Planning” section of the Zendo &
Programs Workgroup has been removed. We are of course glad for any
sangha member to suggest programs but this can be the group that
regularly meets to assess where we’re at.
Practice Committee Needs Summary: None!
The Finance Workgroup
The Finance Workgroup meets roughly monthly to
discuss sangha financial matters. Recently we proposed our first
operational budget which was adopted with minor additions by the Board
in March. The Finance Workgroup is the place for the Board to send
financial questions and ideas for more careful consideration. The
Treasurer (Greg Greenan) is the board member who supports the work of
the finance and the building workgroups.
Bookkeeper: Marti Bartlett continues in this essential sangha role. The Board deeply appreciates Marti’s ongoing, dedicated service to the sangha. That said no one can stay in one volunteer role forever, if you’re interested in learning about the sangha bookkeeping please talk to members of the Workgroup Greg Greenan, John Wiley, or Marti Bartlett.
One more member: Interested in things financial? Another set of calculating eyes would be helpful.
Finance Needs Summary: One more member to join the finance workgroup for regular meetings on financial policy matters; possible understudy for Marti on Bookkeeping.
The Building Workgroup
The Building Workgroup takes care of the building
and its tenants. It organizes sangha work days and ongoing building
maintenance and coordination as needed.
Building Manger: Latona Maillard continues in this
essential role as point person for all of our tenants and fields
inquiries about building use, interfaces with BIMS and does scheduling
and building planning. Thank you Latona!
Library: The Building Workgroup needs volunteers
to maintain, expand, and organize our small but excellent Buddhist
library in it’s new accessible and attractive home off of the lobby.
Regular duties include: cataloging donated materials, shelving checked
in materials, reminder phone calls to people with checked out materials.
Koelle Bodhi is working with BIMS member Rem Ryals on this, and one
more library helper is very much needed.
Garden Laborer: There is always work to do here
especially as the world warms up a bit. There are plans in the works to
expand, but first we need the commitment and organization of an army of
The Membership Workgroup
The Secretary (Brian Davidson) is the board member
who supports the work of the membership and website /technology
workgroups. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, 360.305.0686 if you have questions about the membership or website/technology workgroups.
The Membership Workgroup tracks membership status and maintains accurate membership list using the sangha email list (or other lists needed to track monthly/annual donations?) Working in cooperation with the Finance Workgroup, they keeps accurate records of who members are, what our membership income is, etc, while also keeping individuals membership donations private.
The Membership Workgroup announces regularly, and
especially during our November Membership Drive, about the importance
and benefits of membership in the sangha. They respectfully check on
members who have been absent from sangha life for a while, and asks
lapsed members if they wish to renew their membership. This group
manages the Retreat Grants program which supplies financial assistance
for members to attend Buddhist events outside the sangha. They
accommodate overnight stays at the Dharma Hall for out of towners. They
also regularly print and distribute the Sangha Directory.
Membership Workgroup Members: That is a large load
of tasks and the Membership Workgroup needs helpers for Kathy McKenna
to learn the primary membership functions and fill in as needed.
Membership Needs Summary: One person to help Kathy with various membership-related tasks.
The Website and Technology Workgroup
The Website and Technology Workgroup maintains www.RedCedarZen.org and
Red Cedar Zen Workgroups site. They evaluate new approaches, and
support sangha members in the use of both. Workgroup members promote
RCZC technology usage by providing training for adopted technologies.
Technology Members: Currently, the Tech folks need
more tech folks to learn our fancy ways and educate others so we can
expand our human connections.
Website & Tech Needs Summary: One person, especially someone with some web development background, to help with website tasks and training.