Tara Mandala Policies

Changes, Cancellations, Refunds

Please understand that last minute cancellations are extremely costly for us. The staff time, food, and budget committed to each program is based upon the number of people registered. In addition, you may have contributed a portion of your program cost to one of our scholarship funds. These contributions cannot be returned because others are then affected.

1. Cancellations or Change Requests must be received in writing for a refund or credit to be issued. We recommend that you send an email to registrar@taramandala.org with the subject: Retreat Cancellation Request.

2. Refund/credit amounts are dependent on the timing of the written request.

3. If we receive your written Cancellation or Change Request 31 days or more before the retreat starts, you will receive a full refund, minus a $100 processing fee and minus any scholarship funds donated.

4. No refunds/credit for Cancellations or Change Requests received 30 days or less before the retreat start date can be considered.

5. Cancellations or Change Requests cannot be accepted by phone.

6. There is a $50 fee for all returned checks. Change request fee is $50.

In the unfortunate event that Tara Mandala makes substantial changes to the content of a retreat or cancels a retreat altogether, you will receive, upon your written request, a full refund or credit towards another retreat.

Thank you for planning your retreat time carefully. We look forward to having you this year!

Policy for Children at Tara Mandala

Historically, Lama Tsultrim’s vision for Tara Mandala has been to create a retreat environment that is open to families with children. This provides children, our future, with the opportunity to develop a positive relationship with the Buddhadharma.

Because the Buddhist traditions of Tantra and Dzogchen are both paths of integration rather than renunciation, we believe the presence of children is not detrimental to the retreat environment within certain boundaries.

We believe that many parents would be prevented from coming on retreat if they could not bring their child, for example, if the child is too young to leave at home. We also believe that children benefit from being at Tara Mandala. However, we also recognize the value for parents to have time without their children to practice and that retreatants like a quiet environment. Retreatants should be prepared in advance for the possible presence of children at retreats.

To support a positive retreat environment for all participants, we have articulated the following guidelines for families with children between the ages of 3 months and 13 years (these do not apply during the Family Retreat):


• Children should not be brought to teachings or practice sessions.*

• Children are welcome at ceremonies, tsogs and empowerments but should not be
allowed to run around unsupervised during these ceremonies.

• Children are welcome to visit the temple between sessions if they are supervised.
Parents should introduce their children to the temple and explain the protocol and
meaning of the shrines in an age appropriate way.

• Parents need to bring their own childcare person. The childcare provider may
be the other parent or someone else who will be responsible and respectful. That
person must be 17 or older. The caregiver and child will be charged for housing and
food and will be fully responsible for the child’s safety and welfare.*

• The Children’s Temple (yurt) is available for children as an indoor play area
at all times. We will provide materials for drawing, games and puzzles. Parents
should supplement with creative safe, non-toxic materials. Gifts of Dharma books
for children of all ages are welcome. Parents or caregivers are responsible for
resupplying anything they have used and for leaving the yurt clean.

• Parents will be allowed to commute to closed silent retreats where children are
not allowed. They should understand that they are required to attend all sessions.

• During partially silent retreats parents and children will eat on the West porch
and children will not be asked to be silent there. This should be clearly announced
by the retreat manager at the beginning of each retreat. Retreatants wishing to
avoid children can choose to dine in the Dining Room or the South side of the
Community Building.*

• A few Prajna Residence Hall rooms may be available to families in locations less
likely to create disturbance to other residents. We ask parents to be mindful of
sound in Prajna Residence Hall, within reason, and to abide by the 9:00PM sound
curfew. For this reason, some families prefer to camp so their children have more

• Tara Mandala is a natural wildlife sanctuary and some of the buildings are not
childproof. There are bears, mountain lions, and snakes on the land. Please make
sure that your childcare provider and your child respectfully comply with any
restrictions and boundaries as directed by Tara Mandala staff members. If exploring
the land, they must carry bear spray with them at all times.

• Tara Mandala is not responsible or liable in any way for any accidents or injuries
that happen to your child.

Thank you for your cooperation.

– Tara Mandala Board of Trustees

*Please note on very RARE occasions exceptions can be made based on the practice experience of the parent and the behavior of the child. This exception must be pre-approved by Lama Tsultrim and the Executive Director and the parent and child must have a long standing relationship with Tara Mandala.