- Zen Caregiving Project is a San Francisco-based non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the experience of care for caregivers and care recipients and inspiring each other to live fully in the face of the universal experience of loss.
- Founded in 1986 by members of the San Francisco Zen Center, the organization, then named Zen Hospice Project, specialized in training volunteers to support and care for those living with terminal illness and their family and friends.
- Over this time, the organization has developed an approach to care that is grounded in mindfulness, compassion, acceptance, and respect. This approach also highlights the importance of reflecting upon and exploring our feelings towards death and loss.
- The approach to care underpins the organization’s three strands of work.
- A volunteer program to support those in palliative, hospice, and chronic care settings.
- Mindful Caregiving Education courses, teaching their approach to family, professional and clinical caregivers, and;
- Opening up the conversation around death, loss, and end of life.
- The organization changed its name to Zen Caregiving Project in 2019 to better reflect the breadth of its work.
Logos and Related Files
- Executive Director Roy Remer discusses mindful caregiving at a roundtable with A Thriving Life, 06/26/19
- Executive Director Roy Remer discusses mindful caregiving with A Thriving Life Podcast, 05/29/2019
- Former Executive Director, Dr. BJ Miller at TED, “What really matters at the end of life.” 03/2015
- Former Volunteer Coordinator and current Executive Director Roy Remer sits down with KCTS 9, 09/09/2014
From the Executive Director
“Although the need for care and the need to provide care will touch each of us at some point in our life, we often don’t think about caregiving until it happens to us. Zen Caregiving Project believes it is vital to offer emotional, resilience-building support and community to all caregivers, to help them on their journey.” Roy Remer, Executive Director, Zen Caregiving ProjectRoy Remer, Executive Director, Zen Caregiving Project
Mindful Caregiving Education Program
“There are over 43 million family caregivers in the US alone, and this number is set to rise. People often don’t get any training for this role and are left to work it out for themselves which can be stressful and overwhelming. We provide mindfulness-based approaches to build caregivers’ emotional resilience, helping them to navigate the challenges of caregiving and provide the best quality care for themselves and their loved ones.”Roy Remer, Executive Director, Zen Caregiving Project
“I feel connected to other people through this class, that are going through the same thing I am. I feel more connected to the person I am caring for because of this class, and I feel more connected to myself.”A Mindful Caregiving Education course participant
Volunteer Caregiving Program
“Our Volunteer Caregiving Program has been at the heart of our model of care. It trains volunteers in a mindful-human centered approach and we hear from volunteers that they benefit from the volunteering as much, if not more than, those they sit with.”Roy Remer, Executive Director, Zen Caregiving Project
“I just think the Volunteers are wonderful people – very savvy, very astute, always compassionate. I think every neighborhood at the hospital would benefit from the positive impact of the volunteers.”A resident of Laguna Honda Hospital
“When families and residents are at their most vulnerable, the presence of the volunteers, with their holistic and compassionate approach, serves as a great comfort.”Social worker at Laguna Honda Hospital
“In our society death is often hidden away and we rarely get the opportunity to speak openly about this universal human experience. At Zen Caregiving Project, we trust in the value of contemplating death as a way of embracing life fully and we provide forums in which participants can explore the ideas of loss and death and consider what can be learned from them.”Roy Remer, Executive Director, Zen Caregiving Project
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