Our Therapeutic Teams
We’re a highly skilled team of dedicated and passionate therapists. We believe in what we teach at The Gawler Cancer Foundation and we see the difference it makes to the lives of those who walk through our doors. We work as a team to bring the very best educational lifestyle support and services to people faced with life threatening illness’. We’re also dedicated to building strength and resilience in individuals who are at a cross roads or simply want more out of life.
Program Facilitators & Therapists
Assoc Prof Sanjay Raghav
MBBS, MD, DM, FRACP Certified Level 2 Yoga Teacher
Can talk about philosophy and spirituality anytime and to anyone! Loves to devote morning hours to meditation and Yoga. At least a couple of times a year he goes to places of spiritual significance, to spend time in solitude. He loves spending time with friends and family as well.
Associate Professor Sanjay Raghav brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to The Gawler Cancer Foundation. In addition to his work with the Foundation, Sanjay is a Senior Consultant Neurologist at the Monash Medical Centre and Frankston Hospital, and has been the Director at Dandenong Neurology since 2007. Passionate about sharing his experience and insights with others, he is also an Associate Professor at RMIT, a senior lecturer at Monash University, a supervisor and mentor to RACP trainees, and the visiting professor for the division of “Yoga & Life Sciences” with the S-VYASA Yoga University in Bangalore, India.
As an active member of Australian Integrative Medicine Association (AIMA), Sanjay has a keen interest in holistic living and is proactive in teaching his patients and students how to enrich their lives through an integrative approach to health and wellbeing. Combining his love of yoga with his medical experience in movement disorder clinics at Monash and Golf Links Rehabilitation Centre, Sanjay has developed a Parkinson’s specific yoga program, which he runs weekly with impressive results for his students including improvements to stiffness, movement and tremors.
BBA, MCounsHS, DipPsychophonetic
Has a passion for laughter as medicine and is often seen wearing a red clowns nose. Takes extended time out for reflection and solitude in nature once a year, in addition to his longstanding daily meditation practice.
Siegfried spent many years in corporate management prior to moving to therapeutic work about 20 years ago. He holds a Masters degree in counselling and is also an accredited meditation instructor. His particular interests are in empowering people to take charge of their own healing journeys and to support people emotionally and spiritually at end-of-life. Siegfried returned to The Gawler Cancer Foundation in 2009 after doing 5 years of humanitarian volunteer work in Africa and now works as a group facilitator, counsellor and psychotherapist.
BA, Couns, BAcup
Loves all things deep and meaningful. Boasts that he can teach anyone to meditate, even the busiest thinkers. Committed to healing emotions and relationships.
Paul has been working in the field of mind/body medicine for over 25 years as a counsellor, psychotherapist, meditation instructor and natural therapist. His particular interest is in helping people deal with the range of emotional issues associated with their healing journey. Paul also works with grief and anxiety issues and relationship problems. He teaches mindfulness-based styles of meditation which develop wisdom and compassion through awareness of body, emotion, mind and spirit as one integrated Self. Paul co-authored the book Meditation an In-Depth Guide with Ian Gawler.
Therapist / Facilitator
DipHol Couns, Grad DipCounsHS, Grad DipClinNut
Our zen master. Passionate about food as medicine and sustainable living. Loves spending time creating new recipes and fermenting foods to share with her friends and family.
Maia is a counsellor, meditation instructor, a practitioner of various forms of natural therapies who has worked in the area of energetic healing for over 15 years and has worked at The Gawler Cancer Foundation since 2000. She has a Graduate Diploma in Clinical Nutrition as well as formal qualifications in counselling, psychotherapy and plant-based nutrition with Cornell University. Maia uses her various skills and the experience gained from her own healing to inspire and support others on their path to wholeness and has a particular interest in helping people to access their own inner wisdom.
Overnight supervisor and Meditation Teacher
When not teaching yoga, Emma loves to travel to places where she can trek mountains and tracks, kayak, dance some tango and attend yoga classes herself.
Emma is a qualified yoga teacher and is currently studying a graduate certificate in Yoga Therapy. Emma is passionate about working with people and personal empowerment through quality food, meditation, exercise and inner work.
Overnight Supervisor, Therapist and Meditation Teacher
Dip Physiotherapy, Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner, Grad Dip Health Promotion
Fascinated by mind & body interrelationship and finds joy in helping others deepen this connection. Loves people, living, growing veggies and quiet time in “the bush” for personal meditation retreats.
Julia’s commitment to helping individuals improve their wellbeing is the key thread of her professional life. As a physiotherapist, Feldenkrais practitioner and experienced meditation practitioner she has a keen interest in the interrelationship of mind and body. She has been with the Gawler Foundation since 2011 and brings extensive skills and experience in helping people make positive changes.
Guest Facilitators & Therapists
Dr Ian Gawler
OAM, BVSc, MCounsHS
Dr Ian Gawler is a pioneer of Mind-Body Medicine and teaching meditation in Australia. He is also the founder of The Gawler Cancer Foundation. The author of 6 bestselling books, Dr Gawler has spent the last 35 years developing a wide range of self-help techniques that integrate lifestyle practices such as a healthy diet, regular exercise and meditation with contemporary medicine. A long-term cancer survivor, currently Ian has a wide range of interests that include guest facilitating retreats regularly at the foundation with his wife Ruth.
Dr Ruth Gawler
Guest Facilitator / Therapist
MBBS, MGPPsych, FASPsyMed
Dr Ruth Gawler is a General Practitioner with a specialised interest in Mind-Body Medicine, meditation and Psychology. Ruth worked as a facilitator and therapist at the foundation for 12 years and currently guest-facilitates regular retreat programs there with her husband Ian. The paradigm Ruth works from is that good health and healing involves a process of integrating the physical, psychological, and spiritual aspect of one’s life, and that meditation is key to this process. Dr Gawler holds a Masters in GP Psychiatry and was on the Board of the Meditation Teachers Association for 8 years, and served as President of the Association for 2 years prior to stepping down at the end of 2016. Ruth offers private consultations during some residential programs, as well as through a clinic in East Melbourne.
Assoc Professor Craig Hassed
Facilitator Essence of Health and Mindfulness Meditation Training
A General Practitioner and Associate Professor at Monash University, Dept of General Practice. Craig’s teaching, research and clinical interests involve mindfulness-based stress management, mind-body medicine, meditation, holistic healthcare, integrative medicine and medical ethics. Craig is a regular media commentator and author of New Frontiers in Medicine, Know Thyself, The Essence of Health, Mindfulness for Life, Playing the Genetic Hand Life Dealt You, and co-author of General Practice: The Integrative Approach.
Dr Georgiana Stanton
Co-Facilitator Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis Retreats
MBBS, BcS, BcA
Georgie has worked as a doctor in a wide breath of medical specialties and is now training for her specialization in psychiatry. She has a keen interest in preventative medicine and the mind body connection. Georgie initially attended an OMS retreat as a participant and is now a retreat facilitator. In her spare time Georgie enjoys travel, design, surfing and experimenting with new OMS recipes.
Dr Helena Popovic
Dr Helena Popovic is a medical doctor, leading authority on how to improve brain function, international speaker and best-selling author. Helena is unique in bringing the latest discoveries in brain science to the field of weight management and she is the founder of a groundbreaking weight loss program called Winning at Slimming – thinking the light way. She is also the author of two books: NeuroSlimming and In Search of My Father. She graduated from the University of Sydney in 1995.
Guest Facilitator / Harpist and Composer
Michael Johnson has been performing in major concert venues and festivals throughout Australia. As well as a concert performer, Michael has been working in the field of music for meditation. His tranquil harp music has been an integral part of the Mindfulness Music program at The Gawler Cancer Foundation for over twenty five years. He also uses Music & Mindfulness in Victorian schools and at Delmont Hospital. He has been the resident musician at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne for over a decade, performing in the Harp the Gardens recitals and Twilight Music concerts, providing his music for thousands of overseas guests and visitors to the gardens. His compositions are regularly aired on national radio and television.
Kathleen Cator is a Clinical Psychologist and former nurse with over 20 years of experience as a health professional. Kathleen is a warm and authentic group facilitator, with experience leading a range of mindfulness-based training and therapies in public, education and healthcare settings.
Cert MSC Teacher, Trainer, Mentor
Cert MBSR/CT Teacher
BHlthSci, Dip.Kin, Dip. AppSc
Tina Gibson is an experienced and passionate Mindfulness and Certified Mindfulness Self-Compassion Teacher, having facilitated programs within the education system, cancer support, women’s health and general community.
BA Dip.Ed, Dip.Holistic Healing, Div2 Nurse
Robyn has worked in many fields of education and health, including secondary/tertiary teaching, women’s health, disability and community health management, and nursing. She was a therapist and program leader at The Gawler Foundation for over 6 years. She practises and teaches meditation, facilitates women’s retreats in Australia and overseas and has a deep commitment to helping others to transform their lives.