Mother and daughter

Enhancing the experience
of caregiving by teaching
mindfulness and compassion


We train family, professional, and clinical caregivers to develop and apply mindfulness for engaged care.
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We offer an opportunity to cultivate awareness and compassion by caring for those with chronic and terminal illness.
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We pursue better caregiving through partnering with networks of inspired people and organizations.
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Our Offerings

We teach mindfulness and compassion to improve well-being and care.

Our work, drawing from over 30 years of experience in hospice and end of life care, is grounded in the expression
of the universal values of compassion and service. We teach caregivers to use mindfulness-based tools to improve
well-being, and through conversation, we inspire each other to live fully in the face of the universal experience of loss.

Mindful Caregiving Education

Our courses improve care by helping caregivers build emotional resilience and work skillfully with stress and loss.
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Volunteer Caregiving Program

We train volunteers in skills grounded in mindfulness and compassion to serve people who are chronically ill or dying.
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Exploring Loss

We create and participate in workshops, events and conferences to bring the topics of loss and death into the open.
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Zen Hospice Project changes its name to Zen Caregiving Project

Rooted in our past and looking ahead

After thoughtful consideration and conversations with community members, we will be changing our public-facing name from Zen Hospice Project to Zen Caregiving Project. This change will help us to expand our impact by providing more clarity around our offerings.

We believe our new name holds all of our activities and is inclusive of everyone we serve. The name Zen Caregiving Project will best serve the organization into the future as we expand the reach and impact of our Mindful Caregiving Education, Volunteer Caregiving, and Community Partnership programs.

With the closure of our residential hospice in 2018, many have been confused about the organization's future. We draw inspiration from the thousands of heartfelt conversations that Zen Hospice Project has had over the years of caring for dying persons and their families. We invite you to join us as we shift our focus to the opportunity that the present moment holds.

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Our History

"A whole new way to do hospice work"

The Zen idea of an appropriate response is the simple act of finding practical ways to work toward the goal of reducing suffering, an idea pivotal to Buddhist teachings. The creation of Zen Hospice Project was an appropriate response initiated in 1986 by Zen practitioner Martha de Barros, and other members of the San Francisco Zen Center. They saw a need to address the suffering they witnessed every day among the homeless population of the city, some of whom were dying on the street.

For 30 years, Zen Hospice Project has served people through our direct care and educational programs. Founded by members of the San Francisco Zen Center in 1987, the birth of Zen Hospice Project (ZHP) was an opportunity to "get off the cushion," the act of taking your practice out of the meditation hall and into the world.

As our first Director Frank Ostaseski said, providing this hospice service was " opportunity to bring together mindfulness practice and service practice… It was a whole new way to do hospice work." As we enter into our 31st year of service, we continue to see opportunities to enhance caregiving for people dealing with chronic and terminal illness to meet the needs of even more people.

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What People Are Saying

We want to improve the care experience for everyone. Our greatest reward is knowing that our training improves the well being of those we serve.
I feel more connected to the person I am caring for because of this class, and I feel more connected to myself.
Course participant
Mindful Family Caregiving Course Participant (Online)
Volunteering at Zen Hospice Project has had a profound influence on my life. It brings joy to my life and I always receive much more than I give.
Laurent de Bord
Volunteer Caregiver at Laguna Honda Hospital
Your workshop was a highlight of the weekend. It felt incredibly gratifying.
Mindy Relyea
Everpresence Symposium Founder, and Director
Support Our Work
Your generosity helps us continue to support caregivers and raise awareness of the work they do.

We believe that better caregiving happens through networks of
inspired people and organizations working together.

We work with a range of different partners to share our mindfulness-based approach to caregiving.
Laguna Honda Hospital logo
San Francisco In-Home Support Services logo
ZSFGH logo