Solidarity is an important concept in Chan tradition in general, and with Maha Karuna in particular.
Maha Karuna puts this into practice in the following ways.
Costs of Zen meetings, sesshins, paper and electronic newsletters, website and other things, are kept as low as possible. People helping out with organizing and executing don’t receive any salaries.
As a result, Maha Karuna can keep its prices as low as possible.
On top, there is a solidarity fund. The solidarity fund supports participants in its activities if necessary, so lack of money shouldn’t be a reason not to participate in a Zen evening, Zen day or sesshin.
The potential earnings of activities and extra incomes, for instance by the edition of the cd with sutras, is spent on the solidarity fund and/or the projects in the developing world supported by Maha Karuna.
Gifts and donations are deposited by members and sympathizers on the solidarity fund through our bank accounts.
Maha Karuna supports the following organisations and funds:
Since the middle of 2006 Maha Karuna Chan particularly supports the “Project for the education and care of Children in Especially Difficult Circumstances”. It primarily provides care for children of the ages between 4 and 14 in Thailand. One can support this project by a deposit on the bank account of Maha Karuna Chan, mentioning Pattaya.
Fountain of Life Children’s Center (Good Shepherd Foundation)
Many poor families from the northeastern areas of Thailand come to Pattaya looking for a better life. But in reality, many of them can only find a job selling on the street or collecting garbage. Drug and alcohol abuse are commonplace. Usually they don’t own a house or they aren’t registered, they don’t have papers or civil rights. This causes them to have no access to regular health care and education. Their children lack proper care. Bad hygiene and malnutrition consequently result in a bad state of general health, stunted growth and tooth decay. Often families fall apart, children are abandoned or are cared for by elderly family members. They lose their sense of identity and self-confidence.
In the daycare center up till 150 children are being cared for. A lot of attention is given to acquiring a birth certificate for these children. Only then will they get the right to education. The center gives financial support where it is needed. For instance for the purchase of school uniforms and for the paying for the meals and transport.
Wherever necessary the education of the children is also supported through scholarships, or is even organized.
Another important aspect is the general health, with attention paid to the physical as well as to the emotional well-being of the children. Play and sport have to provide the necessary recreation.