Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation?
The Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation serves as the United States fundraising arm of the Plum Village Community of Engaged Buddhism, Inc. (PVEB), formerly known as the Unified Buddhist Church. The Foundation is a committee of the PVEB; it shares the benefits of the PVEB’s nonprofit status and is not an independent 501(c)(3).
Is the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation a separate organization from the Plum Village Community of Engaged Buddhism?
No. The Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation is a committee of the PVEB. All responsibility and authority rests with the Board of Directors of the PVEB, which includes Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) and Sister Chan Khong, among other senior monastic teachers.
Who created the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation and why?
In 2011, Thay, Sister Chan Khong, and the other monastics of the PVEB Board (called the Unified Buddhist Church at the time) met with fundraising experts to discuss how to respond to the many people who wanted to provide financial support to continue Thay’s work, and to discuss how to meet the community’s financial needs. The PVEB decided to create a coordinated fundraising program based in the US.
What kinds of projects does the Foundation support?
The PVEB Board sets the Foundation’s fundraising priorities based on the needs of the community. Currently, the priority projects include the three US-based practice centers – Blue Cliff Monastery, Deer Park Monastery, and Magnolia Grove Monastery. Funds are also distributed to humanitarian aid through the Love and Understanding Program, Dharma sharing programs, and global monastic support, including health care. You can find more information here.
Do I have to donate to the Foundation to be a member of the Plum Village practice?
Never. No one is ever required to donate funds to the Plum Village Sangha. We do ask that you breathe and smile and offer peace to yourself and your loved ones. Such action is enough.
How can I make a donation to the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation?
There are many options to give a gift to the community. Ways of making a donation are:
- Use our secure online donation form
- Send a check payable to the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation
- Call us at (760) 291-1003 ext 104
For more information about how to send a check, visit our Contact page.
What is the best way to support the community through the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation?
Many people find giving monthly donations through automatic deduction/credit card to be the most convenient. Being a monthly donor in our Sustaining Member Circle program also provides consistent and regular support for the community and allows us to direct funds where they are needed the most. If you are interested in making a larger gift, please contact Denise Nguyen, our Foundation Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (626) 466-9711.
How do I leave a legacy gift (bequest) to the community in my will?
It is very simple to leave a gift to the community in your will. You can offer support through your will, retirement account, or life insurance policy through our Cedar Society program. All the information you need is here.
Where is the office of the Foundation located?
The office is located in Solidity Hamlet at Deer Park Monastery in Escondido, California.
Who is responsible for day-to-day oversight of the Foundation?
The PVEB has appointed a Foundation Working Board of Directors to conduct the business of the Foundation. The Foundation Board makes recommendations and implements the policies approved by the PVEB Board in helping the Foundation meet its mission.
Who is on the Foundation Working Board?
The Foundation Board currently consists of lay and monastic members from the fourfold Sangha. The lay Board members serve staggered three-year terms and may be re-appointed for additional terms. All members of the Foundation Board are appointed by the PVEB Board of Directors. All board members are unpaid volunteers who put in many hours to support the community. Several board members are professional fundraisers as well as long-time practitioners.
Who are the staff members of the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation?
- Foundation Director – Denise Nguyen
- Annual Fund Manager – Mousqa Katawazi
- Gift Processing Coordinator – Thuy-Linh Bowman
- Digital Media Coordinator and Grants Coordinator – Nhu-Mai Nguyen
You can see their bios here. In addition, the Foundation is supported by many wonderful volunteers.
When I pay to attend a retreat at a practice center or buy a ticket for a public talk with monastics, what does my payment support?
Retreat payments help pay for food and the other operational expenses of hosting a retreat at a practice center. For monastics’ public talks, ticket sales simply cover the cost of the venue. The monastic community chooses to keep these costs low in order to make the events easily accessible.
Can I apply for grant funding from the Foundation to support my local Sangha or bring a Dharma teacher to facilitate an event?
Grant funding is available to provide new and existing Sanghas in the United States with funds and resources to support practitioners and their local Sanghas. This includes support to bring a Dharma teacher to a local Sangha to lead a retreat or public Day of Mindfulness event. Sanghas may also apply for a free Sangha resource kit by completing an application. Information and applications are here.
For any other questions, please feel free to contact us here.