Elizabeth Key-Comis – Santa Monica
I first began volunteering at Against the Stream two years ago. At first I was hesitant because I felt like I had too many commitments in other communities and I didn’t have a regular meditation practice. I started by co-hosting Sunday night Dharma Den and I immediately loved it. I found a community of great friends and mentors. I also found that I connected with the teachings and the practice. After a while I started taking on all the volunteer opportunities I could. I especially love hosting day-longs! I also began hosting refuge recovery and my network of friends grew even bigger. What I enjoy most about volunteering is that I get to know so many people. It gives me an excuse to talk to everyone and welcome new people into our community the same way that I was welcomed. It is incredibly rewarding to know that Against the Stream is kept open because of volunteers and I am lucky enough to be one of them. I owe so much to Agaisnt the Stream and I am incredibly grateful. Because of those volunteer commitments I have established a regular practice that has truly changed me and helped me grow.
Josh Holman – Melrose
Initially, I came to Against the Stream because I was curious about Buddhism. The dharma, from what I’d read and studied, seemed to answer a lot of questions. Against the Stream made the teachings of the Buddha accessible and easy to understand. But, what I also appreciate about Against the Stream is its openness and supportiveness. I’ve been coming to ATS for a little over four years. I began volunteering as a host because I felt that I’d gained so much from Against the Stream and the community that I wanted to give back through actions, and not just financially. I wanted to try in a little way to help the center(s) keep helping others. I guess I’m just really grateful to have a place that’s so accessible and supportive, a place that helps strengthen my practice. By volunteering I hope to give a small bit back.