Shopping Cart

Documentary Production – Call for Participants

Shannon Harvey
Are you thinking about taking an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course?
Would you be willing to be filmed throughout?

About the film

From the producers of the internationally acclaimed feature film The Connection, comes an exciting new documentary about meditation.

The documentary follows the story of time-poor, overburdened, health journalist Shannon Harvey as she meditates daily for a year. Shannon is a lapsed-meditator, who suffers from insomnia and an autoimmune disease, which causes arthritis and chronic pain. A team of scientists will measure everything from her stress levels, to her immune function and brain changes, right down to her DNA in order to explore the biological effects of meditation, and to uncover the myths and misconceptions about the practice.

During the year, Shannon will be participating in an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course with Openground meditation teacher Timothea Goddard. The experiences of Shannon’s fellow MBSR participants will also be recorded. Participants will be interviewed and filmed throughout in order to document the individual transformations that may occur. An additional film specifically exploring the wide-ranging potential of MBSR will also be produced and made widely available.

In an age where more than half the population will be diagnosed with a chronic illness, and the The World Health Organisation has warned that mental ill-health will be the biggest burden of disease by 2030, there has never been a greater need for a simple, cheap and effective solution for the side effects of modern living. With growing evidence to support the effectiveness of mindfulness to help people cope with a range of ailments including stress, chronic pain, anxiety, depression, insomnia, and addiction, this film explores whether mindfulness is the antidote the world so desperately needs.

About the course

Mindfulness is developed by purposefully paying attention in an open-hearted way to what is going on in the present moment – in your body, your mind and in the world around you. The 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course brings the principles of mindfulness meditation into everyday life by teaching specific skills and practices that can be incorporated into daily life.

The course is for anyone who wants to reduce work, family or health-related stress, and to bring a greater sense of balance and meaning to their lives, and also to manage challenges more skillfully.

Originally developed in 1979 by Jon-Kabat Zinn to help patients cope with chronic pain, tens of thousands of people around the world have now participated in the program, which can help people cope with stress and chronic pain, as well as increase wellbeing, focus, and creative problem solving.

Openground is the endorsed provider of MBSR in Australia.

What does the course involve?

    •    An individual phone interview with teacher, Timothea Goddard
    •    A 2.5 hour class once a week for eight weeks
    •    One full retreat day
    •    Your commitment to daily homework practice using audio tracks and course book

What does the film production involve?

    •    Each class will be filmed
    •    You may be interviewed at various stages throughout the course
    •    You may also be filmed outside of the course in your home or work environment
    •    The finished documentary will likely be broadly screened online, on television, in cinemas and other community venues (such as hospitals, medical centres or universities)

About the meditation teacher

Timothea Goddard is recognised as a pioneer in bringing mindfulness interventions to Australia over the past 13 years. She was the first person in Australia to complete the training and be accredited with the world renowned contemporary secular mindfulness work of Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Centre for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical Centre (USA) and maintains strong professional links there. She is passionate about pedagogy – the art of teaching and learning - and brings great curiosity and rigor to her teaching. She has broad experience as a psychotherapist, supervisor, educator and workplace trainer over the past 30 years.

About the filmmakers

The film is produced by Shannon and Julian Harvey, who have spent the last 15 years creating everything from commercial TV, to releasing independent feature films, crowd funding, and online video and social media campaigns. It follows the success of their internationally acclaimed documentary, The Connection which is about the compelling new science demonstrating the link between our mind, body, and health.

Since the 2014 release of The Connection they have established a large and loyal international audience that engages with a weekly blog and a podcast featuring interviews with world-leading health scientists.

After a sold-out cinema tour, The Connection inspired a global grassroots movement, with hundreds of community screenings taking place all over the world and some of the film's biggest advocates becoming hospitals, medical centres and universities. It is regularly screened for students in medical schools at Monash University, Harvard University, and University of Leicester, among others.


$350 (Normally $695)

8 x Sundays (2pm – 4pm) + All day practice on 11th March

Session 1 : 04 February 2018
Session 2 : 11 February 2018
Session 3 : 18 February 2018
Session 4 : 25 February 2018
Session 5 : 04 March 2018
Session 6 : 11 March (All-day practice)  9:30 am – 4:00 pm
Session 7 : 18 March 2018
Session 8 : 25 March 2018  

Loft and Earth, First Floor, 70 Bronte Rd, Bondi Junction
Day of Mindfulness: Hughes Centre, Kincoppal School, Rose Bay, Sydney

Expressions of interest:

Older Post Newer Post


I'm dedicated to high-quality health journalism and storytelling. If you value these things too, subscribe to my (mostly) weekly newsletter and be the first to receive my new blogs, podcasts, films and special events. I promise I won’t spam you or share your email address with anyone else.

Join 40,000 others.