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© 2015 Aratika Trust

Aratika Cancer Trust Facilitators

Dr. Barbara Hochstein

Dr Barbara Hochstein, Chairperson, Radiologist, Clinical Director for Breast Screen Aotearoa, Bay of Plenty since 1999, Clinical Lecturer at Auckland University Medical School. Over 20 years diagnosing cancer, frequently asked by patients for advice on what else they can do in addition to the surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy that conventional medicine offers. After meeting Professor

Shaun Holt, Victoria University and reading his book Complimentary Therapies for Cancer. What works, what doesn’t... and how to tell the difference (Craig Potton Publishing, 2010), Barbara formed a small group of people with appropriate backgrounds and awareness to

establish the Aratika Trust. The initial five trustees increased to seven in 2014. 

Dr. Britta Noske

Dr Britta Noske, GP, Fellow RNZCGP, trained Meditation and Nutrition Facilitator

Has a strong interest in nutritional
and integrative medicine,
particularly in relation to cancer
management. Trained with and is a member of the Australasian College of Integrative Medicine, and the Australasian College of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine. Britta’s own cancer diagnosis in 2010 precipitated much research into lifestyle changes for cancer which has convinced her that much can be done by anyone with a cancer diagnosis to improve their prognosis and quality of life. Has attended a Gawler Retreat and trained as a facilitator with the Gawler Foundation. Britta facilitates meditation and nutrition courses for the Aratika Cancer Trust.

Tove Jensen-Munroe

Tove Kisho Jensen-Munroe has recently joined our fold and we are so fortunate to be able to have such an experienced, passionate meditation guide amongst us to share her teachings.

Tove has been meditating and studying Buddhist and Yogic philosophies for over 30 years. Tove holds an interdisciplinary undergraduate degree from The California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco where she pursued studies in transpersonal psychology, human development, and consciousness. She also attended Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado studying contemplative psychology and she holds a graduate diploma in psychology from Massey University in New Zealand.  She has been ordained in the Soto Zen Buddhist tradition and apprenticed as a yoga teacher for many years.   In 2016 Tove was diagnosed with multiple myeloma and a rare condition called Amyloidosis that severely damaged her heart. She has been through the rigors of chemotherapy and survived a dire prognosis. She now guides and facilitates meditation groups in Rotorua and is available to guide meditation practices and support individuals who are challenged with a cancer diagnosis.  She lives in Rotorua with her husband and two Blue Heelers and teaches meditation for Aratika Cancer Trust. 

Gabrielle Gschwendtner

Gabriele was a student of Didier Danthois who founded the “Fool at Heart” School of Sacred Clowning in London in 1993. She studied with him for 11 years, participating in many courses including workshops for street improvisation, kindergarten and the elderly. Gabriele is a trained psychologist and teacher for drama in education, studying body language and mime in Germany, Austria and England over the past 20 years. Since 2006 Gabriele founded her own clown school ‘PlayFoolSpirit’ and has been running workshops throughout NZ. Her work is based on mindfulness and playfulness. Over the last few years she has been working as a clown in health care, especially in rest homes, performed at festivals, corporate functions etc.

Gabriele is also a classical pianist and performer. She has been composing her own piano music since 1990.

Liz Maluschnig

Liz began her career as a registered nurse specializing in oncology and hematology. She then trained as a Counsellor and worked in private practice in Auckland where she jointly set up Life Unlimited Counselling and Seminar Services and travelled nationally and internationally facilitating groups and teaching seminars.

In 1996 Liz moved to Wanaka and trained as a Spiritual Director and became involved in facilitating the Canlive cancer healing and wellbeing retreats which are a branch of the Gawler Foundation, Australia. She currently works in private practice as a Counsellor and Parent Coach and leads parenting and meditation seminars and cancer healing retreats with Drs.Ian and Ruth Gawler. She has also authored 4 books and is a marriage celebrant.

Liz lives on an eco lifestyle property with her husband and 2 teenage children and an old faithful lab. She believes in the power of listening to facilitate reconciliation and healing in relationship with others and to oneself. 

Aleisha Wyllie

Aleisha Wyllie, author of the recently published Life is Great! Cookbook. Her passion for food and animals is something she enjoys sharing with others. A graduate of Waikato University, Aleisha spent over 20 years working in corporations and in her own company before deciding to embark on her passion of writing to help charities that are compassionate and supportive of animals, the environment, and our food supply. 

June Northcroft Grant

June Northcroft Grant, ONZM, Artist, Breast &Cervical Screening Health Promoter Te Arawa, Ngati Tuwharetoa, Tuhourangi/Ngati Wahiao. Born in the Whakarewarewa Village. Committee member of Te Atinga, the national visual art collective. Cancer survivor. Trustee Rotorua Breast Cancer Trust. Has worked with various Breast Cancer support organizations. ONZM for services to Maori and Maori Art. 

Susan Brown


Assistant Facilitator

Susan Brown has a background in physiotherapy alongside 19 years as a Wedding and Funeral Celebrant. As an Aratika Trustee and with her own cancer experience, Susan has a strong interest in functional medicine. She works as a Roots Of Empathy Facilitator and Food Store Manager for Capers Café, Rotorua and is the Mum of three teenage children.

Robyn Jones

Robyn has worked in many areas of health and education, including teaching, nursing, women's health, disability and community health management.  In search of more comprehensive ways to help people, she has also studied holistic therapies and has spent many years both practising and teaching meditation.  During the past 8 years Robyn has been associated with The Gawler Foundation as a therapist, counsellor and program leader, also facilitating Aratika weekend retreats and co-facilitating the 8 day Aratika Cancer Wellness and Healing Retreat in New Zealand.

She currently offers transformational retreats for women, informed by an ongoing commitment to her own spiritual path.