Retreats & Events

Mindfulness and Meditation Retreats

The Gawler’s mindfulness retreats and meditation retreats are all designed to be restful and regenerative, but are intense enough to be meaningful and effective for those seeking deeper experiences of meditation, good health and wellbeing.

Each mindfulness retreat and meditation retreat presented by Ruth and Ian Gawler focuses upon a particular theme relevant to the ongoing development of meditation.

These mindfulness retreats and meditation retreats that are led personally by Ian and Ruth Gawler, will also have immediate personal relevance for all health professionals and teachers as a basis for a mindfulness and meditation teacher training program. They provide a good starting point for using mindfulness and meditation based techniques in teaching and clinical settings and may well satisfy requirements for meditation teacher certification as well as on-going professional education credits.

Retreats and Workshops


Blue Sky Mind - Meditation workshop based on Ian's new book

Yarra Valley Living Centre (Yarra Junction) ___ Victoria

Runs from 10am to 4pm
The mind has two aspects These can be compared to the clouds - our active thoughts and emotions that change all the time and can range from beautiful to turbulent; and the blue sky - that aspect of mind beyond all the activity wherein dwells a stillness, along with profound peace, clarity, wisdom and compassion. In meditation we have the opportunity to get to know both aspects of our mind better and to connect more deeply with what we are actually capable of, and who we really are.

Join us as we practise the Blue Sky Mind techniques together
Ian and Ruth have been meditating and teaching for a combined 70 years. Join them amidst the majestic forests of the Upper Yarra Valley and be supported by the staff and amenities at the Yarra Valley Living Centre.

For more information view ... a PDF here


Mindbody Medicine Retreat with Prof Sanjay Raghav and Dr Ruth Gawler

Yarra Valley Living Centrera Valley Living Centre (Yarra Junction Junction) ___ Victoria

The natural healing force within us is the greatest force in getting well. - Hippocrates

Facilitated by Mindbody Medicine experts Prof Sanjay Raghav (Neurologist) and Dr Ruth Gawler (Integrative GP); this 5 day Mindbody Medicine retreat program has been specifically designed to assist people in managing a wide range of illnesses and health disorders including, but not limited to, autoimmune or inflammatory conditions, degenerative diseases, mental health issues, and chronic stress.

For more information view ... a webpage here



I thought meditation… and all that stuff… was something I just didn’t do… but now I find it has been such a help to me, in my mind and in my body.

Jeff Davis

View the video of Jeff's story

I have attended ten retreats at the Yarra Valley Living Centre and each time I come away calmer, wiser, and soul-enriched to face life’s daily challenges. And a break from cooking is always a treat! At each program I meet amazing people who all have their own stories to tell. On many occasions, it’s hard to say goodbye.

Linda Rocke

Read the full article from Living Well Magazine.

This from a Life & Living Cancer Retreat participant.

Vana Minelle

View the video of Vana's story

Read more inspiring stories at The Gawler Cancer Foundation

Guest Speaking & Seminars




Request Ian to speak at your conference, workshop, seminar or event

Ian and Ruth Gawler have played a major part in popularising meditation, Mind-Body Medicine and other self-help techniques in the Western World. Ian does most of the public speaking, while Ian and Ruth combine to present their retreats and trainings. A compelling and meaningful speaker, Ian Gawler has presented at many major conferences around the world.

If you are interested to have Dr. Ian Gawler present at an event, or if you are interested in supporting or volunteering help with organising a mindfulness retreat, a meditation retreat, or a public event in your area, please contact us by email or call +61 (0)417 869 938 (9-5pm AEST Mon-Friday)

The Gawler Cancer Foundation

The Yarra Valley Living Centre

Home of the Gawler Cancer Foundation 

Ian and Ruth Gawler present mindfulness retreats, meditation retreats, mindfulness and meditation teacher training programs and specific residential cancer healing programs at The Gawler Cancer Foundation’s, Yarra Valley Living Centre.

The Gawler Cancer Foundation and Yarra Valley Living Centre is a not for profit, non-denominational organisation, that promotes a whole-person (holistic) and integrative approach to health, healing and wellbeing.

The Foundation’s  mission is to improve the recovery outcomes and quality of life for people affected by cancer or multiple sclerosis and to educate people in the prevention of illness.  For over 30 years the Foundation have been achieving this through the delivery of educational retreat programs, at the Yarra Valley Living Centre.


Email us here
1300 651 211 or +61 3 5967 5400
(9-5pm AEST Mon-Friday)