Our 2023 conference theme was ‘Making work beautiful’. Herein lies an overview.

In Short…


Mama Alto’s summary of Day 1 was a profound recap, and Mary follows-up with her reflections on Day 2.

Mama Alto sings Songbird

The Conference Album

The energy of the conference can be felt in these sensitive photos taken by Gregory Lorenzutti

2023 Speakers

Here they all are again, so you don’t lose touch with these outstanding people.

Video of sessions

Compassion as the Framework

Mary Freer


Neuroscience of Compassion

Sará King


Grief at Work

Sally Douglas and Imogen Carn


The Price of Work

Andrew Tagg Jane Munro and Laura Hartley. Chair: Kate Bowles


Caring as Activisim

Lekshmy Parameswaran, Victor Montori MD and Mary Freer


Boundary Work

Shannon Weber and Cessalee Stovall


Queen Acknowledgements

Nartarsha Bamblett


Post Traumatic Growth

Selma Quist-Møller



Selma Quist-Møller & Sará King


Acts of Care for Better Collaboration

KA McKercher


Future Leading is Collective and Collaborative

Claire Wathen


Unfolding Space for Listening at Work

Kate Bowles and Brigid Russell



Vox pops at the conference


How do you think we can make work more beautiful?


What themes or ideas are standing out to you?


What skills do we need to grow collectively so we can be agents of ‘Love in Action?


Wear the revolution

If you missed out on purchasing merchandise, or think it would be great gifting for someone you love, fear not. It is all still available for your getting.


Every revolution worth it’s pinch delivers a newspaper, disseminating its mission’s intent, as have we. Within its 12 pages is support material outlined at the conference, so attendees returning to their work and lives are well resourced. This could also be yours.

You may recall this

Sará plays an Innato

The sounds found in this instrument had the power to quell ruckus and settle a room in moments. The word “Innato” means inborn, unlearned. it’s inside all of us. You can also play its vibration on top of a persons head to give sensation of being inside the sound.

We salute the people that show up big for us

A heartfelt thanks to our Vollies

A participant at 2023 Conference said this:

“I absolutely loved the volunteer presence. From the moment I walked down the stairs from Federation Square to see someone in a yellow shirt and pointed me in the right direction, to babysitting or general helpfulness—it added to the feeling of being cared for. I loved that they also participated in the workshops and came to the dinner. It illustrated the whole approach of care without saying anything at all.”

We simply could not do the conference in the way our gatherings are safe, inclusive and so everyone feels cared for. With all the love we acknowledge those who turn up for us.

👏 Appreciation post for Mary Freer and the BEST conference I have been to in a really long time… Compassion Revolution really was LOVE IN ACTION 💞 This gathering felt like a welcome tonic during what can only be described as globally traumatic time 🌏❤️‍🩹

When we talk about ‘making work beautiful’, we’re clearly not talking about ‘harmony’ or ‘niceness’, we’re talking about social justice, wellbeing and belonging.

Rosie Thomas OAM
Co- Founder—Project Rockit

Many of my team (former and current that was present) experienced a deep healing and that for me was an unexpected positive outcome. That experience alone allows people to see the science/evidence that bringing these practices into the workplace makes a key difference!

2023 Conference Attendee
Mailchimp Survey

This conference is a humanising experience. It strips back the ‘worker’ label and reveals the power of the individual experience as well as the genuine importance of community and the collective.

2023 Conference Attendee
Mailchimp Survey

… incredible it was – neuroscience, grief, post traumatic growth, creativity, co-design, boundaries, preventing burnout, listening, healing intergenerational trauma and the most connected acknowledgement to country I have ever experienced with Queen Acknowledgements.

Bel Ryan
Ignite Wellbeing Co

Compassion Revolution conference is a one of a kind experience like no other conference. Topics and themes covered go to the heart of human enquiry, springing action, curiosity, hope and care. This is my second year attending and what strikes me is the beauty of everything from the catering, room set-up, flower arrangements, t-shirts, pins, cloakroom, notebooks and name tags. Every detail is designed to uplift.

2023 Conference Attendee
Mailchimp Survey

I didn’t expect people to be so open and sharing their experiences, their thoughts and their opinions, but I think this is really special because it’s facilitated so many great conversations.

2022 Conference Attendee


Previous conferences



We never know how our small activities will affect others through the invisible fabric of our connectedness. In this exquisitely connected world, it’s never a question of ‘critical mass.’ It’s always about critical connections.

Mycelium is the vast and intelligent underground network of the mushroom. This super network connects all living plants to one another, carrying nutrients and information from one tree to the next. Compassion across communities works in much the same way.

There’s no going back to the pre-pandemic days of 2019. Across the world writers, thinkers and artists are naming this place we are in as a great turning point; a place of no return; a transition. Our health systems have been revealed as moribund. Our workforce are tired and overwhelmed. Ambulances ramp and patients queue. Now is no time for nostalgia.


2022 conference speakers



With COVID-19 still raging, Compassion Revolution stepped in and delivered an inspiring Conference that ran over three nights and two days, connecting people all over the world.

Opening night was a hybrid session where South Australia presented in person and many others joined us online. Mary Freer had a conversation with Seth Godin, the theme being ‘Can Capitalism Flourish Alongside Compassion?’, followed by a panel discussion. 

The next two days were executed on our digital community platform, with rigorous conversations designed to create cultures of care that are high quality, continually improving, and compassionate. We set an intention that these discussions motivate our community to take action. 

Mary also launched her book, Compassion Revolution: Start Now. Use What You Have. Keep Going.

2021 conference speakers

This years hybrid conference enjoyed these outstanding humans who, in all their rich variety of disciplines, brought their perspective of compassion and how to lead, and be led by it.



Because of COVID-19, more than ever, health and aged care workers were being stretched in ways never imagined.

Compassion Revolution Conference responded by building a digital community platform, having created a warm safe meeting space for connection, support and conversation. 

During November, Compassion Revolution curated a month of key speakers and engaged audiences as many as 860 people in conversations of moral imagination and social courage.

We also introduced a Book Club where five books were chosen. These books were themed in resilience, care, inclusion and diversity — and participants had group conversations with the authors, where robust conversations teased out some of the complexities of care work.

2020 conference speakers

This years online conference enjoyed these outstanding humans who, in all their rich variety of disciplines, brought their perspective of compassion and how to lead, and be led by it.



The Compassion Revolution called for people who care and invited compassionate leaders to bring their wisdom and inspiration to the work of health, aged care and social good.

This was the conference’s inaugural year held on (local indigenous country), at the Melbourne Arts Centre to an audience of 350 people. 

Over the two days CR brought together internationally recognised leaders, clinicians and change makers, all focussed on improving our systems of care.

Our first conference was a sell-out and the feedback insisted we keep going.


2019 conference speakers

In our first year, Compassion Revolution Conference brought together speakers from the world, who, in all their rich variety of disciplines, brought their perspective of compassion and how to lead, and be led by it.

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