Zen Hospice Project provides comfort, connection, and healing at the bedside of those facing advanced illness and their loved ones, while also training and supporting a new wave of volunteer and professional care givers. Serving more than 31,000 people to date, our primary geographic focus is the Bay Area, but our work has gained national and international influence.


Death is scary. For those given six months or less to live the fear is not only present, it is all-consuming. At Zen Hospice we give patients and their loved ones a space for those fears to be recognized and eased, inviting the articulation of individual end-of-life preferences. This is a process that helps shift the cultural perceptions of death and dying toward acceptance and the awareness, both individually and institutionally.

So many of us think of life and death as two separate things. It doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, the two are connected. What if the things we cherish most in life were the same things we carry with us toward death? Those moments that make us feel awake. Loved. Human. What if we could live our lives – fully – all the way to the end? Zen Hospice Project, IDEO and many others are exploring how we might provide the best care possible and design a better experience, for everyone. And we'd like you to join us. We believe it starts with being open to the idea of discussing death. Daring to look at it, and bringing your own light to it.


We offer direct care, educational programs, and inspirational support. Serving more than 31,000 people to date, our primary geographic focus is the Bay Area, but our work has gained national and international influence.

  • The Guest House- The house is a six-bed residential care facility that offers 24-hour care, seven days a week for those facing advanced illness and end-of-life. We offer a home-away-from-home setting focused on care and compassion for residents and their families. Those who live at our Guest House usually have a life expectancy of six months or less, and have determined—along with their physicians and families—not to seek a cure, but to pursue comfort and quality of life.
  • Education + Training- In the past two decades, Zen Hospice Project has trained more than 1,500 volunteer caregivers to provide compassionate care with a contemplative approach. We continue to build upon that accomplishment by training and supporting more than 50 new volunteers each year. All of our educational offerings initiate personal exploration by inviting a dialogue about the end-of-life experience and assumptions. 
  • StoryCorps Legacy- This StoryCorps program provides people of all ages with serious illnesses, and their families, the opportunity to record their stories. As a partner, members of Zen Hospice—residents, family members and friends, volunteers and our staffs—have the chance to record, share, and preserve their stories.


Music to Grieve to on iTunes

Music to Grieve to

Listening to sad music after losing a loved one, being diagnosed with a terminal illness, or finalizing a divorce might seem counterintuitive, but this somber sounding activity has been proven to help.

Nothing can prepare you for grief, nor is there a right or wrong way to deal with it, but sad music is an easily accessible and highly effective tool that can help you begin to heal.

Learn How Sad Music Can Help You