Community Cook
Ratna Ling Work Study Volunteer Program

Ratna Ling Retreat Center - Meditation Hall

Dream kitchen at Ratna Ling Buddhist Retreat Center in coastal redwoods awaits an avid cook!

Forested hills, redwoods, prayer flags, star-studded night sky

  • year round
Cazadero, California
$200.00 / month
Some experience required
Start Date:
Starts immediately!

We are looking for a cook to prepare vegetarian meals for our volunteer community. Wow! is a common reaction by visitors to our spacious, commercial class kitchen. Your skills and enthusiasm will flourish in this residential work study opportunity located in the beautiful coastal redwoods in Northern California.  Assisting professional cooks is a great opportunity to add new cooking skills and amplify your natural flexibility. Our cheerful head retreat cook responds skillfully to last minute information about multiple dietary needs and works amicably with all those assisting in preparing retreat meals. 

As a volunteer in our work-study program, you will receive:

  • Free housing
  • Free laundry facilities, WiFi, domestic phone calls
  • Free vegetarian meals, tea and coffee
  • Free classes in a variety of Buddhist studies-topics and schedule vary 
  • Monthly living allowance 
  • Opportunity to learn about and engage in Buddhist community's ceremonies, celebrations and practices

Job Perks

  • Food Handler Certificate-online course and certificate provided
  • Working with professional cooks, learning new approaches

Special benefits

  • Living in a spectacular setting in the midst of the redwoods, wide, open spaces, and more stars at night than you can count!
  • Close to hiking trails and the Pacific Ocean
  • An environment where meaningful work and self-development are valued
  • The support of a caring community


  • Cooking family style vegetarian meals for 20-30 volunteers one to two meals per day Monday-Friday (Saturday as needed)
  • Food ordering and kitchen inventory management-prior experience not necessary
  • General kitchen maintenance, cleaning, and sanitation
  • Assisting external cooking team on retreat weekends 

Desired qualifications/qualities:

  • Good cooking skills (self trained is acceptable)
  • Experience in large quantity cooking a plus
  • Organized with an attention to detail
  • Familiarity with a variety of cuisines a plus
  • Reliable and hard-working
  • Baking skills are always welcome!
  • Creative and flexible in a rapidly changing environment
  • Willingness to work as part of a team 

Our weekly schedule is rigorous-6 days a week-and rewarding. Our work is our key to cultivating awareness.

How to Apply

Click APPLY NOW to apply and for more information about volunteering at Ratna Ling Retreat Center. Or send a resume and photo right away for immediate consideration to, and your application later. 

Please note: We are a vaccinated community. All resident volunteers and visitors are required to be fully vaccinated against Covid before arrival. 

Contact Info