Our main project is the reforestation of 70 acres of severely eroded land. We are working to re-create the Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest indigenous to our area. This forest type is found only in Southern India and Sri Lanka and provides a rare biological richness due to its very high species abundance (over 1000 species of trees, shrubbery and liana). The Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest is now close to total extinction as only 0.01% survives. This is a last moment effort to keep this very rich and beautiful forest on earth. As part of our reforestation effort we are also working on water conservation and soil management.

Our projects include the work with local children, hosting many groups of people interested in conservation, the UniverCity of Compassion and an animal sanctuary where we care for rescued animals.

We practice an eco-friendly way of life including veganism, alternative construction, solar energy, compost toilets...

We host more then 1000 volunteers a year from all over the world, making Sadhana Forest India one of the largest residential volunteer projects in the world.

Sadhana Forest India is a place where you can be and feel like an integral part of Nature. It is a place of sharing. We eat our three meals a day together, share our living and sleeping areas, and share the essential duties that help the community run smoothly and simply. We live under certain guidelines and schedules that help us function as a community.

Sadhana Forest is based on the principles of gift economy. All of our work is supported through gifts (donations). 

Our team is comprised of long-term volunteers, including the founders and project directors. None of our volunteers earn a salary and all work voluntarily.

On December 27th, 2009 Sadhana Forest started a project called Children’s Land. This 2.7 acre project s meant to involve local people in the world of sustainability in a way that empowers them to be creative and think independently. In Children’s Land the children are initiating the different activities or joining them as they please.

Within Sadhana Forest is The UniverCity of Compassion (UCC) is a space for discovering and nourishing ideas for compassionate action, within the setting of a self-organized community of learning. The UCC is an initiative of Sadhana Forest, a reforestation project and conscious living community which offers the framework for collective learning. The term UniverCity comes from the understanding that living is learning.

Sadhana Forest has branching communities in the following countries:

On April 8th, 2010, Sadhana Forest Haiti, a daughter community on the other side of the globe, was started, sharing the same values and commitment to human unity. So far 80,000 food bearing trees have been distributed and planted in the local community. With the current survival rate this amount of trees has the potential of feeding 70,000 people.

In Kenya Sadhana Forest is establishing its 3rd locality in Samburu County. Sadhana Forest Kenya’s aim is to grow food forests with the Samburu people to help promote food security in an area that is often affected by droughts and malnutrition.


Free / Work-Trade

Sadhana Forest, Auroville.

Jan 01 - Dec 31, 2018Minimum stay: 28 nightsMaximum capacity: 25 people
Food included
We welcome new guests on weekdays between 5:30AM and 6:00PM. There is no need to make any sort of reservation. Guests arriving before noon may choose either to join a seva team immediately or to rest and admire our beautiful living space until lunch. We serve lunch at 12:30PM and can give a full welcoming, including tour and registration, between 2PM and 6PM.

Guests may also arrive on weekends between 9:00AM and 5:00PM. Please be aware, though, that the community is likely to be very quiet: there is no forest seva on the weekends, nor is there any lunch served inside Sadhana Forest.

We highly recommend arriving during daylight hours. If you will be arriving earlier or later, please inform us in advance.

Please be aware that we ask that each of our guests commit to a minimum amount of time with us. This is meant to ensure the smooth functioning of the community and the best experience for all involved.

For citizens of foreign countries aged 40 and above and for families with one child or more the minimum stay is two nights.

For citizens of foreign countries under the age of 40, the minimum stay is 4 weeks from December 1st to March 31st. For those arriving from April 1st to November 30th, the minimum stay is 2 weeks.

For citizens or residents of India the minimum stay is 2 nights.

Many choose to stay for a few months or more. We are very interested in long term participants/interns staying with us for a period of six months or longer. Please email us for details about committing to a longer stay.

We appreciate creativity and initiative, and welcome any ideas you may have to improve our project and our community.

If you are reading this and you are a resident of India, a family, or person above the age of 40 please email to tell us this and we will reply with the appropriate information email.

We practice an eco-friendly way of life including: veganism, alternative construction, solar energy, biodegradable toiletries, recycling, food composting, riding bicycles, compost toilets, and purchasing local, organic foods whenever possible.

We do not charge for accommodations for guests. We engage in seva (selfless service) for an average of 25-35 hours per week which includes additional community shifts such as cooking meals, cleaning after meals, maintaining solar panels. etc. Participants mainly plant, mulch, and water trees during the planting season, work on water conservation in the forest and around the community, maintain the community area, and spend time with the community children.

Free facilities include a small swimming pool, free 24/7 unlimited access to the Internet with your own laptop – weather and technical issues permitting, five hours each day (excluding Fridays) of AC power to charge electrical items (sun permitting), a small library, the use of several bicycles, and a playground for children. There are also daily workshops offered that are run by our community members and guests and vary each week.

At Sadhana Forest we eat a pure vegan diet, which means no animal products from living or deceased animals. We eat fruits, vegetables, rice, millets, beans, and dal. Sadhana Forest is a non-profit ecological project that does not generate any income; therefore we unfortunately cannot afford to provide free food for guests. We share the cost of our 100% vegan meals equally. The total cost of food per person is 500 INR per day (just under 8 USD per day). This price is subject to change based on the economy of India. Please contact us soon before your arrival to make sure you have the correct, current information.

Key Stats.

Year founded


Size of project site

28 hectares

Languages spoken

  • English
  • Tamil
  • Hindi

People on site

25 - 150

Dry season

April to June

Wet season

November to December

Living Conditions.


  • shared rooms
  • private room

Vegan Food

  • communal kitchen access
  • communally cooked meals
  • over 80% locally sourced


  • medium: voice calls (no video)

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