"When one thought ends, right before the next thought begins,
there is a tiny gap called 'now.' Over time we learn to expand that gap."

– Spring Washam

Hemera Foundation Scholarships

With deep thanks to the Hemera Foundation, Spirit Rock has been awarded, for the fourth time, a generous grant for 2018 retreats. This grant supports three fellowships: one supports Educators, the second supports Health Care Professionals, and the third supports Artists. Eligibility and criteria for each fellowship category is below. One fellowship award is permitted per calendar year per person. Fellowship applications are collected through the Hemera Foundation using Hemera's online application by "SlideRoom". Hemera Foundation requires all applicants pay a $5 adminstrative fee per application that will go directly to support SlideRoom. See "Criteria for Funding" and "How To Apply?" section at the bottom of this page where you will also find the list of eligible retreats.

Contemplative Fellowships for Educators (CFE)

The CFE program supports educators’ growth through contemplative practice in a retreat setting, allowing individuals the opportunity to cultivate mindfulness, compassion, personal well-being, and professional efficacy, and, in turn, embody and apply these qualities to promote positive school cultures. The long-term vision of the CFE program is to build an ever-expanding community, online and in person, of educators whose lives and teaching are informed and supported by contemplative practice.

Educator Fellow Eligibility

The CFE program provides financial support for teachers or staff working full-time in pre-K, grades K-12, or school district settings, or are currently enrolled as a full-time student in a Master’s Degree program in Education. Full-time G.E.D. teachers or teachers working in juvenile detention centers are also eligible.

Contemplative Fellowships for Health Care Professionals (CFHP)

The CFHP program supports health care professionals through the deep contemplative practices taught, developed and strengthened on retreat. Meditation retreats provide a supportive training environment in which individuals can cultivate mindfulness, compassion, and personal well-being, qualities which can extend into their professional lives and improve workplace culture. Part of the long-term vision of the CFHP program is to build an ever-expanding community, online and in person, of health care professionals whose lives and work are informed and supported by contemplative practice.

Health Care Professional Fellow Eligibility

The CFHP program provides financial support for individuals who meet both of the following requirements:

  • You are employed full-time in the health care field
  • You work primarily with patients/clients or oversee other healthcare professionals
Examples of Eligible Roles (ALL of these must be full-time):
Acupuncturist Chaplains Chiropractors
Dentists Dental Assistants Dental Hygenists
EMTs & Paramedics Dieticians & Nutritionists Direct Care Staff
Medical Assistants Medical School Students Medical Technicians
Nurses Nursing Assistants & Orderlies Physicians/Doctors
Physician Assistants Psychologists Social Workers
Therapists (Physical, Occupational, Massage, Radiation, Speech, Recreational, Music, Art) and their corresponding Assistants



Tending Space Fellowships for Artists (TSF)

The aim of the TSF program is to nurture the creative practice of seeing things as they are, to cultivate awareness, and to live and create from this insight. The desire is for artists to experience the immersive, contemplative environment of a meditation retreat. The TSF is available to artists with a sincere desire for the experiences of extended meditation practice to inform and influence their creative expression in the world. Examples of your work, including 1 - 4 portfolio items is required for this fellowship.

Artist Fellow Eligibility

The TSF program provides financial support for full-time artists in the following areas - visual, performing artists, writers, and multi-disciplinary artists - whose professions directly relate to their artmaking practice.

Criteria for Funding for All Three Fellowships

The amount of support (or funding) for eligible individuals is based upon one of the criteria below. Only one fellowship award per calendar year per person. (*See note below.)

  • Applicants who are first-time retreatants – these are individuals who are new to meditation practice or who have never attended a residential meditation retreat longer than a weekend (1 - 3 nights) – 100% full funding available.
  • Applicants who have sat a few previous longer retreats – these are individuals who have attended at least one 4-day residential meditation retreat – Funding is not guaranteed, may only be partial funding (~50%), or need-based funding.
  • Priority funding is given to those who have no retreat experience.

*If your financial situation is such that you can comfortably pay for a portion of the retreat fees yourself, the Hemera Foundation asks that you consider this possibility as this would allow funding to be spread among more fellows.

Funds are limited, and are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. We encourage anyone interested who meets the criteria to apply. Fellowship awards apply to the retreat fees only. Applicants are responsible for Dana offerings (donations) to the Dharma teachers and retreat staff; and any additional fees required for CE credits, if offered.

In accepting the Hemera Fellowship award, you agree to fill out a survey about your retreat experience and the impact it has on your life and work/art.

Cancellation Policy for All Fellowships

If a fellow needs to cancel who received full funding, the fellow may have to forfeit the fellowship funding for the current calendar year. If a fellow who received partial funding needs to cancel, a non-refundable cancellation fee of $50 may be charged and the fellow may have to forfeit the fellowship for the current calendar year.

How To Apply?

  • Choose the Hemera Fellowship that applies to you:
  • Click application link that best suits you and complete the online Hemera Fellowship Application to submit your request for funding. Hemera requires a $5 admin fee per application.
  • Please do not submit your Hemera application any earlier than 4 - 5 months prior to the first day of the retreat. For example, if you are interested in an April 2019 retreat, submit your application around November/December 2018.
  • Award status -- patiently wait for your award status from the Spirit Rock Registrars; it could take a couple of business days for a reply depending upon the volume of requests. We will let you know if funds are available and collect any fees then, if applicable. Please DO NOT register for a retreat through the standard Spirit Rock registration system if you cannot attend the retreat without a Hemera scholarship.

Eligible 2018 & January 2019 Retreats for Hemera Fellowships (spaces are limited per retreat)

Please review the retreat descriptions and check your calendars before applying for a retreat!

December 2018
In the Presence of Love: Metta & Qigong (220R18): December 10 - 16 (6 nights) --- SOLD OUT OF HEMERA SPACES
Insight Meditation Winter Solstice Retreat (222R18): December 17 - 23 (6 nights) --- SOLD OUT OF HEMERA SPACES

January 2019
January Metta Retreat (228R19): January 8 - 15, 2019 (7 nights) --- SOLD OUT OF HEMERA SPACES
Trusting in Awareness, Trusting the Heart (231R19): January 22 - 26, 2019 (4 nights) --- SOLD OUT OF HEMERA SPACES
Heart of Awareness (235R19): January 27 - February 1, 2019 (5 nights) - PARALLEL

April 2019
The Power of Insight Meditation (240R19): April 1 - 5, 2019 (4 nights)
Opening Space: Mindful Yoga and Embodied Meditation (245R19): April 24 - 26, 2019 (2 nights)

May 2019
Insight Meditation - A Path of Wisdom, Compassion, and Freedom (254R19): May 20 - 25, 2019 (6 nights)
Insight and Awakening (256R19): May 26 - June 2, 2019 (7 nights)

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