Business Stories Mar 25, 2020

From the moment you walk in the door of Australian wellness center Kula Health, you know there’s something wonderfully different.

It’s significantly different in such subtle ways too.

Instead of a waiting room, there’s an ‘interactive waiting space’; if you’re waiting anyway, why not stretch out on the hanging rings or a yoga mat? Or perhaps meditate using the provided eye pillows?

It’s all part of the holistic wellness experience that the company strives for.

And your experience at Kula doesn’t end at the conclusion of your appointment.

Before you leave, you have another unexpected experience waiting for you. You’re given a pebble which you are asked to drop into one of three jars in the reception area. At first, most new clients don’t know what this ritual is all about and seem confused when, with two outstretched hands, they are ceremoniously presented with the tiny stone.

But co-founder Ben Murphy says that finding out what that pebble is for is all part of the wellness experience at Kula. And we’ll look into that in-depth soon.

For now, though, let’s walk through a typical visit to a traditional medical doctor’s office.


First, you sit in a waiting room – for who knows how long – staring at bad art, pharmaceutical ads, and 7-year-old copies of home décor magazines. Then, when your name is finally called, you wait again – usually alone – in a smaller, colder room. Eventually, someone comes in to prod you with gloved hands and cold instruments. Then, you’re quickly shuffled out to pay your bill. Repeat again in six months, please. Such is the modern health care experience.

The wellness movement emerged, in part, as a response to this sterile, mechanical nature of traditional modern medicine by offering a more human, holistic approach. Kula Health takes even this holistic medicine to a whole new level by integrating their philosophy into not just their practice itself, but their whole dynamic with clients – from the reimagined waiting area to the mysterious pebble.

Ben understands that the core concept of wellness and holistic treatments means attending to the person as a whole. That means providing healing and happiness that go beyond Kula’s services like chiropractic, massage, and acupuncture. Sharing the experience of giving is a perfect example.


Ben’s favorite B1G1 project exemplifies Kula’s approach to wellness. There’s nothing more fundamental to health than clean drinking water. Yet, a distressing number of communities worldwide lack access to it.

“The water problem,” Ben points out, “goes beyond the physical health problems associated with lack of access. Children in areas of need often spend hours a day trekking back and forth to available clean water sources that can be miles away. Time spent retrieving water is time that cannot be spent in school, thus perpetuating the cycle of poverty.”

So each jar in Kula’s reception represents a different community in need. Each pebble placed by a client results in 30 days of happiness and healing being delivered to the corresponding community in the form of access to clean drinking water. When clients are told what their pebble is for, they smile in joy, as do the team at Kula Health too.

“This allows the happiness and healing to literally transfer to something greater,” Ben says.

Making clients an integral part of the giving process is one of the things that Ben hopes inspires clients to be the “happiest and healthiest versions of themselves.”

“Your greatness is not what you have but what you give,” he says.


Initially, Kula set what initially seemed like a staggeringly ambitious goal of providing 1 million days of fresh water access by 2030. Ben thought that goal should be revised… but not in the way you might think.

Kula upped the ante by setting their sights on 10 million days! To put that number in perspective, it would take over 330 thousand pebbles to reach the goal. Assuming each pebble is, say, just under an inch in diameter, it would require a jar about 12 feet wide and 40 feet high to hold them. Now that would make an interesting addition to a reception room.

Take a look at their 2020 Goal in this video.

Ben is not worried if that sounds impossible. He and his team love a challenge. They’ve already given 460,000 days (or over 15,000 pebbles!) of water access to date. That’s a real dent in a large goal that they made client by client, and pebble by pebble. And that’s how you build big things – from bringing small things together.

Kula Health shows the way — simply and profoundly. We’d love to know what you’re doing too.

R. Vincent

R. Vincent enjoys reading about the dedicated people and innovative businesses of B1G1 as much as he enjoys writing about their inspiring work.

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