Who We Are

Our Mission

Creating a holistic system for health care practitioners (doctors, nurses, caregivers, acupuncturists, massage therapists, psychotherapists), family members, and anyone else who works with the elderly and dying to recognize, and prevent compassion fatigue from inadvertently damaging their patients or the families of their patients.


Najah Abdus-Salaam

Licensed Acupuncturist and Founder and Director of Nourishing Compassion

Najah Abdus-Salaam’s love for Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine began twelve years ago with her first Acupuncture treatment. It was so profoundly powerful that she decided right then and there to become a healer. She graduated with her BS in Marketing and Advertising from Kean University in New Jersey and after working in her field for a number of years and not feeling fulfilled, Najah attended Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego where she graduated with her Masters in Traditional Oriental Medicine. During her clinical work in externships at San Diego’s Senior Center at St. Lutheran Church, and the San Diego Cancer Research Institute in Encinitas, Najah’s passion to help the elderly population and those affected with terminal illnesses grew immensely. It has taught her to be a compassionate, gentle healer that has the ability to hold a safe space for her patients. After working with Integrated MD Care, and providing treatments in-home, she saw the need of not only her patients, but the caregivers desperately needed healing and help. It is from here that Nourishing Compassion was born.


Nicole Treadaway

Yoga Instructor 

For more than 20 years, Nicole has the honor of guiding healing body practices and movements to people of all ages and walks of life; helping to ignite the spark within each individual she meets.Through the time-honored traditions of yoga, meditation, breath work and sound healing; Nicole combines mindful body-awareness and heart-centered nurturing to inspire increased self awareness, and an improved sense of connection to one’s body.

It is Nicole’s passion to encourage and guide us to dive deep within; to honor and love our highest Self.

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.11.05 PM

Amber Largent

Licensed Acupuncturist 

Amber has always had a fascination with the human body and a desire to be of service. After studying theater and dance at UCSD she stumbled upon massage therapy and has been a licensed massage therapist since 2004. After years of providing massage services a desire to understand and treat the body on a deeper level led her to the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine where she graduated with her Masters in Traditional Oriental Medicine in 2013 and became a licensed acupuncturist soon thereafter. Guided by curiosity and caring, Amber sees herself as a collaborator in her patients’ health and well-being. Her needling style is gentle and she incorporates some massage into every session.

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.20.54 PM

Andrea Arteaga

Licensed Acupuncturist 

Andrea began her study of Holistic Medicine in 2003 while attending the School of Healing in San Diego.  There she completed the 1000 hour Holistic Health Practitioner Program. Her course of study consisted of various massage modalities including Shiatsu acupressure, nutritional counseling and Qi Gong, a meditative martial art practice. In 2011 she earned a Master’s degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine from the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. And in 2014 she became a certified Qi Gong instructor. Today Andrea practices acupuncture at the Naval Training Center, a branch medical clinic of Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD). She is excited to take part in the Nourishing Compassion project and hopes to provide some peace and respite for those that give so much of themselves to the sick and dying.                                             


Carla Naden

Founder and Director of Synergy Animal Hospice, Advisory Board Member for Nourishing Compassion

Carla dabbles in the world of creativity and animal awareness : She is the Director of the nonprofit, Animal Synergy, which rescues super seniors, special needs, and terminally ill companion animals who have run out of time at animal control. Their souls are restored for whatever time remains. Her goal is to provide respect and dignity to all beings, no matter their age, appearance, or health status; and increase the save rate of all shelter animals, promoting a lifesaving nation. Synergy has received multiple awards (including the Red Cross Humane Heroes Award), and was recently featured on the People Doing Good series & a few others.


Dr. Joy Lynn Freeman

Doctor of Chiropractic., Ph.D.c

Joy Lynn Freeman, has been a pioneer in the healing arts for over thirty years, as a natural physician, speaker/facilitator and Therapeutic Life Counselor. Joy is the author of 2 books the latest: 7 Keys to Connection. She has also produced a series of five back-care videos, two CDs of inspirational songs and co-created Quantum Shift Retreats— incorporating expressive arts, therapy, ritual, and nature.

Joy expresses her creativity as a singer, dancer, drummer and through offering workshops and retreats on awakening our true and creative self. Joy facilitates with a warmth, zest and passion that assists others in finding the courage to express their authentic and creative selves, speak their truths and follow their callings.

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.13.56 PM

Heather Fenwick

Licensed Acupuncturist and Yoga Instructor 

Heather Fenwick brings a mosaic of knowledge and learning to the mat when guiding a yoga class.  She has completed various yoga teacher trainings (since 2005), studied Ayurveda, yoga, and Indian culture in India (throughout most of 2006), and has completed her Master’s degree at PCOM, adding the intricate, venerable wisdom of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture, and Herbology to her expertise. Heather presents her students with yoga-philosophy-nuggets so they can cultivate a deeper practice and a greater sense wellness off the mat as well.  She balances the inspiring with the practical, the uplifting with the grounding, so that students may carry a mindfulness and a lightness with them into all parts of their lives. A “recovering gypsy”, Heather also leads retreats to India, Central America, and within Southern California.  www.recoveringgypsy.com

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.23.30 PM

Verna Fisher

Licensed Social Worker and Reiki Master

Over twelve years ago, Verna took a leap of faith by moving to Escondido and creating a retreat center for women.  She established her business, Integrative Wisdom, to give voice to her vision of bringing body, mind, spirit and soul into the equation of healing and living fully.  She brings her experiences from over twelve years of hospice medical social work and as a Reiki Master to her work as teacher, healer, speaker and trainer.  Verna’s passion is to provide women a safe and nurturing place to learn, to grow, and to heal.  


Paula 'Goshi' Cunningham

Retired RN, Advisory Board Member for Nourishing Compassion

Paula has spent her entire adulthood working in the hospital systems of San Diego County. She started as a candy striper as a teenager, and eventually worked her way up to become a registered nurse. She has 14 years oncology and hospice experience, where she lovingly guided her patients through their treatments. She has always had a passion for nursing and helping others. Her caregiving role extended to caring for 3 of her loved ones, all ultimately transitioning from pancreatic cancer, including her dear husband of 35 years. Paula is a Reiki Master and cancer survivor herself, and is honored to be a part of Nourishing Compassion. She sees the deep need for this program to support both sides of caregiving.


Kerem Brulé

Sound Healer and owner of Beautiful Sounds

Kerem Brulé is a live soundscape artist, meditation musician and healing instrument educator from San Diego supporting transformational workshops, retreats and trainings.  As the owner of Beautiful Sounds, Kerem trains yoga teachers, healing professionals and workshop facilitators how to easily incorporate live healing sounds and vibrations into their unique work in the world. Learn more online at playbeautifulsounds.com as well on Facebook (/playbeautifulsounds) and Instagram (@playbeautifulsounds).

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.16.26 PM

Jennifer Durrant

RN, Shamanic Practitioner

Jennifer is an Energy Healer and Shamanic Practitioner. She was first introduced to Reiki 13 years ago while seeking healing for herself and experienced profound changes in physical and spiritual health. Jennifer dabbled in other intuitive healing arts but when she started to study Shamanism she knew she found her true calling. “For me, Shamanism is all about facilitating deep connection to spirit to bring about profound healing for my clients”. Jennifer has developed a 4 step program in which she guides clients through a series of healing sessions incorporating use of crystals, energy healing and shamanic journeying.

Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 5.25.29 PM

Zac Smith

Certified Massage Therapist

Zac is the CEO and Founder of Traveling Hands Company. With almost 20 years of spa experience,  Zac has always been passionate about helping to facilitate healing in his clients.  After a car accident left him unable to perform massage work, he discovered that cannabis infused topicals and their anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxant properties helped to rid him of all pain without the use of opiod-based pain killers. 

Join Our Mailing List

How To Help

By donating to Nourishing Compassion, you will help to allow nurses, caregivers, family members who care for their loved ones direct access to all the programs that we offer.

By supporting these forgotten heroes, you are dropping a pebble in the pool of healthcare which will have a ripple effect to eventually touch the lives us all.

Contact Us