About The Mindfulness Foundation
Gross National Happiness GNH
To read about our Bhutan visit, GNH and the UN - please scroll down to see Anthony's section.
Anthony was recently in Bhutan, the birthplace of Gross National Happiness (also known by the acronym: GNH). GNH was coined by the fourth king of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, in the 1970s . . .
The Mindfulness Foundation is a founder member of:
- The Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition
- NCB Partnership for Wellbeing and Mental Health in Schools
The Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition
A group of over 70 leaders in health and policy.
Resilience and Results
How to improve the emotional and mental wellbeing of children and young people in your school. This document was produced to help schools understand the importance of supporting their pupils' emotional and mental wellbeing.
The Zurich Community Trust is the UK registered charity that has played an integral role in the birth of the Coalition and has a deep understanding of why the coalition matters for the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people. Zurich has donated over £65 million in grant programmes addressing key social issues and works to improve the quality of life for disadvantaged people.
NCB Partnership for Wellbeing and Mental Health in
A national network of 50 key organisations from the education, health and children's sectors.
'What works in promoting social and emotional well-being and responding to mental health problems?
- Better inspection for all
2014 Ofsted consultation with stakeholders on an increased focus on health and well-being.
- A whole
school framework for emotional well-being and mental health
Building on the what works guidance we have produced a self-assessment and improvement tool for school leaders to support them in implementing a whole school approach for emotional wellbeing and mental health.
Our vision is to create mindful communities
Our intention to make Mindfulness Meditation available to all UK School children by 2022 is to support more resilience, happiness, peace and wellbeing in communities.
The Mindfulness Foundation is a social enterprise formed and inspired by the nearly 700 attendees at the London Mindfulness in Schools Conference with Jon Kabat-Zinn on 27 March 2013. We advocate and campaign to give school children access to the benefits of mindfulness practice by raising the profile of mindfulness through better understanding and practice amongst stakeholders in the education and health sectors: Children, Education Leaders, Government Departments, MP's, Parents, Policy Makers, School Governors, Teachers and Teacher Training Centers.
Mindfulness Practice Groups
Practicing Mindfulness together strengthens our awareness, focus, intuition and most importantly our peace of mind. Connecting with our deep well-being empowers us to take action for a happier and more caring world.
Weekly mindfulness practice groups are a benefit to all by raising the profile of mindfulness through better understanding and practice amongst stakeholders in the education and health sectors. Click here for Contact Details for the Kingston & New Malden Mindfulness Practice Group and the London Meditation Community.
Key Team Members
Who are the people behind The Mindfulness Foundation? Get to know some of our team of passionate creators, innovators and mindfulness meditators.
CEO and Founder
"In 2013 I had the wonderful experience of snorkelling in the crystal blue waters of the Red Sea's beautiful coral life."
Yoga is a mindfulness practitioner with decades of meditation experience who facilitated the IBM Sustainable Development agenda. Successfully steering the issue from inception through rapid growth he was awarded the IBM Chairman’s Award for Exceptional Achievement. This initiative evolved into the IBM Corporate Smarter Planet worldwide program.
“I hadn’t anticipated spending my whole career with one company, but IBM was expanding at such a pace I never held a position for more than three years, before I was offered a new challenge."
Currently, Anthony is in Bhutan, the birthplace of Gross National Happiness (also known by the acronym: GNH). GNH was coined by the fourth king of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, in the 1970s and is a developing philosophy as well as an "index" which is used to measure the collective happiness in any specific nation. The concept was first mentioned in the Constitution of Bhutan enacted on 18 July 2008 and first debated in the UN at the sixty-sixth session of the UN General Assembly in 2012.
"Meditation devotee and ultra-running groupie: watching limits disappear is kind of a thing, really."
Graham is the co-founder of Anamaya, a multidisciplinary treatment centre in London, and the chief architect of the Anamaya App, a self-development and meditation App. Coming from a background in law and banking, Graham teaches meditation and mind training to private clients at Anamaya.
The Mindfulness Foundation is advised on facets of
Mindfulness including Clinical, Psychological and
Psychotherapy by Paul Christelis MA and Shanti
Burgess BSc from the School of Moments.
In loving memory and gratefulness of Shanti who shared immense love and compassion in her work with The Foundation before her death in 2016.
BSc Psych (Hons), Adv. Dip Person Centred Studies
"A year of inner and outer adventures."
Shanti worked as a clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, supervisor, lecturer, organizational trainer and teacher for the past 30 years, both in the UK and overseas, in a variety of settings.
Always on the leading edge, Shanti was recently awarded an MSc in Mindfulness Based Applications by Bangor University, the first programme in the world to offer a Masters in mindfulness-based approaches.
"I'm looking forward to travelling in 2014 - into the depths of the Amazon and out to the tops of the high rises in New York."
Paul has worked as a clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, writer, group facilitator and teacher for almost twenty years. The common thread in all that he undertakes, is mindfulness. He is dedicated to helping people to be more present in their lives, in their relationships, work and with themselves.
Paul has recently completed his MSc in Mindfulness Applications at Bangor University, Wales researching the role of Intention in mindfulness and in life.
Dr. Maya Spencer
BA Hons, MB BS, MRCPSych, Dip Clin Hyp
"With an orthodox medical practice, and my heart in mind-body medicine, I felt that I stood astride an ever-widening chasm between allopathic and complementary medicine.”
Dr Maya Spencer a former Consultant Psychiatrist has been devoted to meditation and complementary approaches since 1983. Since retiring from the NHS in 2010, Maya has followed her heart and trained with Bangor CMRP as a teacher of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Programme. She has taught or co-facilitated more than 30 MBSR programmes in Somerset and is the principal author of the BWYQ Level 4 Certificate in Working Therapeutically with Mindfulness and Compassion. This is the first qualification in mindfulness to be approved by Ofqual, the national educational regulatory body for schools and further education.
BA Hons, Executive MBA
Director of Development
"I am an avid traveller and love a great book!'"
Zoe is working with The Mindfulness in Schools Campaign as Director of Development supporting the building of resilience in young people through meditation. She previously worked at London Technology Network, building links between universities and technologists, and at the Institute for International Research, heading up the life science conference division. Zoe has an Executive MBA from London Business School and a BA in English from Royal Holloway, University of London.
MSc PhD (Chemistry), PGCE
Greater London Campaign Manager
“I am thrilled that I have perfected a recipe for a delicious mango-apple chutney”
Having grown up in Africa, lived and worked as a teacher in India and finally in the UK, Kanchan has wide experience of different cultures and education systems. A personal quest to find a universal humanist philosophy led her to explore Vedanta, Yoga and finally Vipassana meditation. Whereas all are compatible with each other, she feels that the meditation is unique in that it is experiential and accessible to all. As she continues her own practice, she is passionate that it should be available to all, in order to lead happy fulfilled lives.
Founder Route 2 Excellence
South London Campaign Manager
“My own serious practice of mind training techniques began 26 years ago on the birth of my son”
A graduate in Home Economics, Meeta holds Masters and Pre doctorate degrees in Community Resources Management. Her versatile career in supporting change in individuals, groups and organisations is backed by her rich life experiences and diverse additional training in Counselling, Motivational interviewing, Facilitator -personal effectiveness, values in healthcare, mindfulness and Science of Happiness, Positive Parenting Program, Parent and Baby Yoga and more.
Dr. Rohini Vijaygopal
B.Pharm, MBA, PhD, Dip. in Yoga, Meditation, Relaxation therapy and several other wellness qualifications.
Hertfordshire Campaign Manager
“Enhancing the prana (life-force) within oneself is the foundation of a joyful existence”
Rohini is a qualified pharmacist with a Masters degree in Management. She gained her PhD for research on human behaviour focusing on acculturation. Having worked in the corporate sector for a decade, she is currently a university lecturer in the UK, with a global student base. Rohini was introduced to yoga, meditation and the use of sound for well-being right from her childhood. She has sustained this passion throughout her life alongside the other professions that she pursued. She continually trained in yoga, meditation and other relaxation modalities both in India and in the UK. Stemming from her own practice and with a firm belief that inner well-being is fundamental to a joyful human existence, she is committed to activities that work towards enhancing the same for one and all.
Beth Ann Nyssen
"Freedom is not given to us by anyone; we have to cultivate it ourselves. It is a daily practice... No one can prevent you from being aware of each step you take or each breath in and breath out." ~Thich Nhat Hanh
Beth Ann Nyssen is an optimist and activist. She wears several different hats in her work. When people ask her what she does, her favorite response is "What don't I do?" She is a nurse, writer, and world traveler who uses her different skills and experiences to promote organizations and ideas she believes in through writing and action. Daily mindfulness practice has given her the freedom to pursue her dreams, and she is happy to be working with the Mindfulness Foundation to spread the love. Her favorite yoga pose is vrikshasana, or tree pose.
The Mindfulness Foundation is inspired by the vision and work of Jon Kabat-Zinn, Osho and Buckminster Fuller. Founded in 2013 by Yoga Bowers, a retired IBM Executive who established the UN Sustainable Development Goals as the foundation for the IBM Corporate Smarter Planet Initiative.
Our vision is to create a mindful society. We are passionate to make Mindfulness available in all UK Schools to help children, teachers and parents live healthier, richer and more peaceful lives and then help other countries.
The findings of positive psychology have enormous, life-changing potential for children. It is imperative they benefit from this growing body of knowledge and have the opportunity to develop the attitudes and skills to help them flourish, improve their resilience and thrive.
We are taking a 21st-century approach to building a well-lived life at the Mindfulness Foundation.
We now know that happiness is a skill that can be strengthened through better understanding and practice. We want to make the benefits of these scientific discoveries readily available for the use of children in Schools.
The Oxford Mindfulness Centre within the Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, have been at the forefront of mindfulness research and training since 2008. They define Mindfulness as "Enhancing Human Potential and Preventing Depression by Combining Modern Science with Ancient Wisdom." Mindfulness could provide the practical instructions for bringing about that excellence in education.