Hemera Contemplative Fellowship

Thanks to a grant from the Hemera Foundation, Natural
Natural Dharma Fellowship is pleased to offer fellowships to support individuals for residential retreats.

The long-term vision of these fellowships is to create an “ever-expanding network and
community of individuals whose personal and professional lives are informed and supported by contemplative practice”. Fellowships are available to people working in a wide range of eligible professions, and the Foundation is now also offering support to young adults 18-25 in connecting with contemplative practices.

To that end, Hemera Contemplative Fellowships support and promote personal and contemplative development. The primary intent of these fellowships is to enable persons committed to service, who have never attended a meditation retreat or who have not attended a meditation retreat of longer than one weekend, to deepen and develop their contemplative practice.

Support is available up to 75% of the retreat cost. Hemera Contemplative Fellowships do not support travel expenses to or from the retreat center. Please be aware that not all of our retreats are available for funding. In order for a retreat to qualify for a fellowship, it must be primarily a meditation retreat. Individuals are eligible for one fellowship-supported retreat per year.

Using mindfulness meditation and other contemplative practices, Natural Dharma Fellowship’s retreats provide a deep, educational environment where individuals can learn to cultivate compassion both for themselves and for others; to develop focused awareness and relaxation; and to enhance their professional capacity.

The goal of such retreats is to enable participants to take the training and knowledge they have gained, and apply these strategies and practices in their private and professional lives.

Please read the requirements listed in the Eligibility section below before you apply.
  1. For on-site retreats, choose the room type you wish to have and register for that type of accommodation, paying a 25% deposit at the least.
  2. Click the “Apply” button below and fill out the Fellowship application. There is a non-refundable $5 application fee.

Application Note:  The fellowship cannot be evaluated without both of the above items being received. Once all information is received, you should hear the results of your award within one week.

Important Note: If you are awarded a Hemera Contemplative Fellowship, we ask that you commit to attending the retreat for which you applied. Should you need to cancel for any reason, please notify us immediately. Cancellations without notification may result in forfeiting your eligibility for a Hemera Fellowship for the following year.

By applying for a Hemera Contemplative Fellowship, you agree to allow your contact information to be shared with the Hemera Foundation.

Please Note:
Each retreatant may receive just one fellowship per calendar year.
  • For onsite, residential retreats, please choose the Shared Room option. Fellowship funding can only be used to accommodate stays in shared rooms unless you present a compelling reason for an exception. You will need to pay at least a 25% deposit with your registration.
  • If a fellowship is awarded, the amount of the award will be refunded to your credit card on file.
  • Individuals who have never attended a meditation retreat longer than two days, or who are new to retreats offered by Natural Dharma Fellowship, are eligible for up to 75% funding.
  • Individuals who have previously attended at least one meditation retreat longer than two days, or who have previously received a Hemera Fellowship, are eligible for up to 50% funding.
  • Need-based funding may be available to support up to 100% of retreat costs.
  • Those who can afford to pay for any portion of their retreat are welcome to do so. This allows funding to be available for more fellows.
  • Individuals are eligible for one fellowship-supported retreat per calendar year.
  • In no case may the fellowship award exceed the actual costs of the retreat.
  • Please note: Fellowship funding does not support travel expenses, teacher dana, or fees for CEU’s or CEC’s.

As of January 2024, fellowships are available to people 18-25 years old without regard to profession or employment status.

Applicants over 25 must be working at least part-time in their field and possess a deep desire to serving others through their profession.

Professions Eligible for Hemera Contemplative Fellowship’s include:

Health Care Professionals

  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Orderlies
  • Medical Technicians
  • Dentists
  • Psychologiest
  • Psychiatrists
  • Therapists 
  • Social Workers
  • Hospice Staff
  • Chaplains
  • Graduate Students in health care fields


  • Pre-K through college, including Master of Education (M.Ed.) students.

School Administrators and Staff

  • Principals
  • Guidance Counselors
  • Advisors
  • Nurses
  • Librarians
  • School Safety Officers


  • Full-time visual, performance, writers, multidisciplinary artists

First Responders

  • Police
  • Firefighters
  • EMT’s
  • Paramedics
  • 911 Dispatchers
  • Disaster Response Teams


  • Active Duty
  • Reservists
  • Veterans


  • Public Defenders
  • Legal Aid Attorneys
  • Victim Advocates
  • Human Rights Advocates
  • Employees working for any 501(c)(3) non-profit organization or private foundation.
  • Employees working in direct human services (government or private). Examples: health and human services, child protective services, workforce development.