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Live Your Heart

  • Catskill Animal Sanctuary 316 Old Stage Road Saugerties, NY, 12477 United States (map)
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Find Your Voice Narrative Arts Workshop at Woodstock Sanctuary

“The entrance door to the sanctuary is inside you.” (Rumi)

In Defense of Animals and Compassion Arts present Find Your Voice, Live Your Heart: Narrative Healing Arts Retreat - an inspiring program for people who care deeply about animals, this transformative retreat consists of two day-long workshops on Oct 5th & 6th at two sanctuaries in upstate New York.  Workshops can be taken separately as a single program for one day, or together as a retreat weekend. Workshop space is limited and the registration deadline is 10/3/19 by 5pm at

LIVE YOUR HEART: Sunday, October 6th (10am-4pm) at Catskill Animal Sanctuary


Our LIVE YOUR HEART healing arts day on Sunday October 6th (10am-4pm) will be held at Catskill Animal Sanctuary, a safe haven for rescued farm animals in Saugerties, NY.  Sponsored by In Defense of Animals*, the LIVE YOUR HEART program includes a sanctuary tour, vegan lunch, and a talk by psychotherapist April Lang on understanding and managing Compassion Fatigue, followed by group discussion, Q&A and support, light yoga, music, and an arts-based interactive healing activity led by workshop co-leader Lisa Levinson.  LIVE YOUR HEART is a healing arts workshop for animal advocates, animal caregivers, and others devoted to compassion for animals, to explore techniques for dissolving anxiety, managing stress, and building personal resilience for helping animals without becoming depleted.

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Anyone who cares deeply about animals and advocates for them may at some point be susceptible to developing Compassion Fatigue. Through talk and experiential exercises, we can better understand and identify what triggers and feeds Compassion Fatigue while learning techniques for resilience and healing when feeling overwhelmed. We learn we can acknowledge the suffering of others and help without taking on their suffering. This program features a talk and discussion led by psychotherapist April Lang on Compassion Fatigue and how to prevent or manage it, followed by a healing arts activity with workshop co-leader Lisa Levinson for renewal, embracing community care, and honoring our relationships to other animals. 



APRIL LANG is a NYC based psychotherapist, animal advocate, humane educator, and writer, devoted to working with animal advocates, as well as people grieving the loss of animal family members. She is the author of the book Animal Persuasion: a guide for animal advocates in managing life's emotional challenges.  


LISA LEVINSON is the director of In Defense of Animals’ Sustainable Activism Campaign which offers support for animal activists via a helpline, support groups, and online events. She also organizes events for Vegan Spirituality and is an expressive movement therapist with 17 years of professional experience.    

To register for this workshop:        

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Catskill Animal Sanctuary rescues farmed animals and champions veganism. The Sanctuary is a 148-acre refuge in New York's Hudson Valley for eleven species of farmed animals rescued from cruelty, neglect, and abandonment. Between 250 and 350 residents call the Sanctuary home at any given time. Looking an animal in the eye and seeing someone — not something — looking back is one of the most profound shifts human beings can make in their understanding of the world and their place in it. As the very best way to end animal suffering, improve our health, and heal our ailing planet, Catskill Animal Sanctuary advocates veganism and provides support and encouragement through a culinary program. To learn more visit   

Please note: Companion animals are not allowed at the Sanctuary (registered service animals are allowed by law).



We wish to extend our special thanks to our co-partnering organization, IN DEFENSE OF ANIMALS, for their support in co-sponsoring this narrative healing arts retreat event with us and most especially, for their important work for animals for three decades, worldwide. 

IN DEFENSE OF ANIMALS is an international animal protection organization with over 250,000 supporters and a 30-year history of fighting for animals, people and the environment through education, campaigns and hands-on rescue facilities in India, Africa, and rural Mississippi. IN DEFENSE OF ANIMALS, 3010 Kerner Blvd, San Rafael, CA 94901 (415- 448-0048)

Earlier Event: October 5
Find Your Voice
Later Event: October 19
Ahimsa-Song House Concerts