In this online masterclass, Vidyamala and Gail will introduce ways mindfulness and compassion can help staff, patients and carers manage the journey of palliative care.



For those who care for the dying in hospices, hospitals, or in the home, learning to bring an open-hearted attitude to each relationship is essential, but this can sometimes lead to empathic burnout. Mindfulness and compassion training have been shown to be crucial elements of an open-hearted care strategy that allows you to take care of others while taking care of yourself. This masterclass will introduce you to these practices, show what makes them effective and how they can help you to.


The day will also be suitable for those who are living with a palliative diagnosis, and who wish to learn how mindfulness and compassion can be invaluable tools for the rich and remarkable journey of taking each day as it comes with as much awareness and presence as possible: ‘living while dying’.


Gail has been running a popular mindfulness programme for patients and families at St. Michael’s hospice since 2016, and the benefits are clear. This masterclass will introduce you to the skills of sharing mindfulness to help those facing pain and difficult emotions – whether clinician or patient.


The best way - perhaps the only way - to learn mindfulness and compassion, both for yourself and to share them with others, is to experience them deeply. This is what the masterclass will be focused on, and one couldn’t ask for two better guides than Vidyamala Burch and Gail Calthrop, who will be leading the masterclass.

Vidyamala, Co-founder of Breathworks, will introduce the core principles of mindfulness and will lead practices that help people living with a palliative diagnosis, staff, and family members feel more able to cope with difficult decisions and to face whatever arises with equanimity, care and dignity.

Gail, a Registered General Nurse who works full-time as a mindfulness teacher at St Michael’s hospice, will share how mindfulness augments her knowledge as a staff nurse and how she helps patients and families in both one-to-one and through more in-depth mindfulness courses. She will also share how she uses mindfulness to help staff cope with the inevitable pressures of palliative care.


This is a non-residential event with two attendance options: 

  • Virtual participation via online conferencing (book below)
  • In-person attendance at St Michael's Hospice, Hereford. To join in-person, please visit this page.

Who is this event for?

The masterclass is suitable for people coming for their own personal benefit, as well as mindfulness teachers, and others who wish to incorporate mindfulness and compassion into their work with others, including NHS Staff and other Health Professionals, and mindfulness teachers and practitioners. 

What's included?

Continuing Professional Development Certificate

This event is a valuable CPD opportunity - a certificate of attendance with 5 hours CPD will be available to all attendees on request. Mindfulness and compassion practices are receiving more and more attention as part of sustainable, evidence-based treatments for both physical and emotional difficulties.

Remote attendees will be full participants in the programme, though we do recommend joining in person if possible, for the most immersive experience of the practices and the chance to meet informally with event leaders and other delegates.  

The Masterclass Leaders

Vidyamala Burch

Vidyamala Burch is a mindfulness and compassion teacher, author, disability spokesperson and Co-founder of Breathworks.

Originally from New Zealand, Vidyamala sustained life-changing spinal injuries in her teens. She started exploring mindfulness and meditation to help her manage her condition and found the results to be life changing.

Vidyamala’s vision in establishing Breathworks was to translate ancient Buddhist practices into language that is accessible to anyone living with difficult circumstances - regardless of faith, culture or race. Her particular interest is how to work with physical suffering, but her approach can be applied to working with any sort of pain or difficulty.

Vidyamala is the author of the award winning Mindfulness for Health, Living Well with Pain and Illness and Mindfulness for Women. The British Pain Society awarded Vidyamala an honorary membership for her contribution to the field of pain management in 2018, and the Shaw Trust’s Power List named her one of the most influential disabled people in the UK in 2019 and 2020.

Vidyamala teaches retreats and workshops, and speaks at a number of international summits and events. Her teachings can also be found on meditation apps Insight Timer, Simple Habit and See more about her work here.

Gail Calthrop

Gail is a Registered General Nurse and Breathworks Mindfulness Practitioner. She has been a Palliative Care Staff Nurse working within hospice settings for 25 year, and has been instrumental in establishing St Michael’s hospice as a centre of excellence in mindfulness within the end of life care.
Mindfulness became part of her life 12 years ago. Following being part of mindfulness for stress course at work, Gail began a thought-provoking, re-evaluation of how she was leading her life. She recognised that where she works and the situations she finds herself in, holding and supporting those at end of life, their family, friends and colleagues, is a journey which is often bearing the unbearable.

Learning to be kindly supportive of herself is an integral part of Gail’s daily life. Mindfulness has offered endless kindly ways to help relate helpfully to all that was, and is, happening in her life. Having trained as a Breathworks Teacher, Gail loves sharing mindfulness practices and approaches with all the people she comes into contact with, and finds that fostering these kind and compassionate mindful approaches richly rewarding and fulfilling.  


Individual £75
Concession £40

Breathworks offers a concessionary rate for those in financial hardship (eligibility is for those earning less than £17,000 a year).

Please note that we usually record our online CPD, Masterclasses and Workshops as selected recordings will be made purchasable on our online shop for training purposes. If you don't wish to be recorded, please feel free to switch off your video and/or audio during the event. 

Book a place

Ticket Quantity Price


Decrease Increase £75.00


Decrease Increase £40.00