In this new series, “Caregivers Corner,” I sit down with caregivers from different sanctuaries to talk about their work as caregivers. Joy Gomez is the farm manager and a caregiver at Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary in Poughquag, New York. Joy and I discuss their recent …
Series: Sanctuary Tour Podcast
Kathy Stevens, Founder of Catskill Animal Sanctuary, author of Where the Blind Horse Sings, and Animal Camp, public speaker, educator and much more, sits down with me at the sanctuary amidst the goats, chickens, sheep, turkeys, and other animal friends whom she calls the “under-foots.”
Kathy shares her story of how the sanctuary came to be, and her earlier years growing up and living amongst many farm animals. A teacher at heart, Kathy combined her love of teaching and her love for animals to build an educational sanctuary for rescued farmed animals almost 20 years ago. Catskill Animal Sanctuary sits on about 150 acres of beautiful land in Saugerties, New York surrounded by the Catskills. Kathy is one of the pioneers in the animal rescue and sanctuary world, and is as passionate as they come! Her love for animals and the work she does is contagious – bringing her message of kindness and compassion for all beings to everyone she meets.
Michael the turkey greets me as I arrive and is constantly distracting us as he walks by, runs up to caregivers for treats, and entertains us with his amazing personality.
We discuss the work she does at the sanctuary and beyond to educate and bring awareness to visitors about the many issues of factory farming through tours and their humane education program, the New Leaf Vegan Mentor Program, summer camps, public speaking events, and more.
Kathy takes listeners on a virtual tour to meet one of the beloved rooster residents, “Al”- by telling his story and the story of the millions and millions of birds just like him who are not liberated, but are exploited in animal agriculture to be raised for food. Kathy talks about a condition called “bumble foot” that many birds raised in animal agriculture have, as well as many other health issues that come along with being raised to get really big really fast in the meat industry. She compares the size of Al and all of the problems he has to the size of a severely obese person and the problems they would have. This is typical for many of the rescued farmed animals to have serious health issues which are imposed on them in the factory farming and animal agriculture industries.
Kathy references the book, Grilled: Turning Adversaries into Allies to Change the Chicken Industry by Leah Garces that describes in detail the horrifying conditions of a chicken house and the work that Mercy for Animals is doing to change this.
Kathy and I discuss her book Where the Blind Horse Sings, and her beloved animal friends whose stories she tells throughout the book. We discuss The China Study, by Dr. Colin Campbell which I am currently reading and the profound discoveries through years of research and a large team of doctors and scientists that prove animal protein and secretions are cancer causing, and we both agree that we have a lot of UN learning to do after years of being lied to by the industries (dairy industry and animal agriculture industry) that raise animals for food who tell us we NEED the protein from animal flesh and secretions. Although much research now proves and tells us otherwise, this proves to be an obstacle for some people who have these myths ingrained in them. Physicians for Responsible Medicine by Dr. Neal Barnard is also a good source for information to learn more about the link between animal based food and serious health issues.
Was 2019 the “year of the vegan” as Forbes and The Economist predicted? “That depends on how you define veganism” Kathy says. Kathy goes in depth about her thoughts on veganism and what we all need to do. There is a sense of urgency and we are at a tipping point. She says they meet people where they are with love and urgency.
We discuss all of this and more in this episode.
Visit their website to learn more about the sanctuary, to shop, support, visit, and more!
Order the cookbook Compassionate Cuisine for some fabulous recipes!! *HINT- the banana bread is the BEST EVER. oh, and the Shepard’s Pie!! YUM.
Episode 22 – Jonathan Brant – Discussing the Surging Plant-based Market and Growing Competition with the Animal Agriculture Industry
Jonathan Brant is an animal rights activist, a writer, an artist, a musician and singer, a student at Eastern Michigan University, and author of “An Open Letter to a Curious Omnivore.” In this episode, Jonathan and I are back together again discussing important issues surrounding …
*Audio typo correction!! – In this episode I say 100 billion animals have died in Australia wildfires. I meant 1 billion. Sorry for the audio typo! Happy New Year! This episode is different from others in that there is no guest. In this raw and …
Mike Barootijian is the owner and head chef of Party Animals Catering – A vegan catering service and meal plan service in the Hudson Valley in New York. It was a pleasure to sit down with Mike and discuss his work, his vegan story, and much more.
We talked about his recent trip with me to tour Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary and how connecting with the animals fuels his fire and validates why he does the work he is doing. We discussed the work Mike does at various events, including Hudson Valley Veg Fest, and other veg fests, his meal plan service and how to connect with Mike to order his food or book Party Animals for your next event.
We are excited to announce that Mike will be the chef cooking at the first Vegan Cooking Class and Tasting with Party Animals Catering at Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary in their new location just down the mountain from the previous location in Poughquag, New York on Saturday, January 18, 2020. This is a free event open to the first fifteen people who sign up. Mike will demo how to make his FAMOUS Mac n cheese, vegan meat loaf, delicious roasted Brussel sprouts and share this deliciousness with all participants!! In addition to the cooking class and demo, everyone will enjoy a guided tour and meet some of the rescued animals who call this beautiful sanctuary home.
To connect with Mike, please visit Party Animals Website or find him on Instagram or Facebook. If you are in or near the Hudson Valley, Mike will help you with your next event or party, or provide delicious gluten free – vegan food for you to pick up at designated locations.
Please visit Safe Haven Farm Sanctuary to learn more about the incredible work they are doing with rescued animals and to support this crucial work.
If you are interested in the vegan cooking class or future vegan cooking classes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Beth is an animal rights activist and avid volunteer living in upstate New York. After learning about the many deaths of horses associated with horse racing, Sarah began protesting with Horseracing Wrongs, an organization founded by Patrick Battuello, that exposes the many wrongs in …
Helena Lundblad and I discuss the details of how Magical Creatures of Hamakua began and how she became a large sanctuary overnight. She tells the story of her best friend Janice the goat and how she nursed her back to health after Janice burned all …
Cows Come Home Sanctuary located in Talbott, Tennessee is such a magical place filled with lots of love and a very inspiring story. Randie and I sit down on her front porch overlooking the cow pasture, and have a heartfelt conversation. She shares her story publicly for the first time, which is not only heart wrenching, but also profoundly connected to her incredible desire to end the multi-generational cattle ranch that her husband and father-n-law had been running for many years.
She explains why she just couldn’t not speak up and do something for the cows and babies that were being separated every time they were taken to auction. The look in their eyes reminded her of a time when she herself feared for her own life.
“As a survivor of long-term domestic violence, who am I to turn a blind eye to the fear, sorrow and hopelessness to other living beings?”
“Leaving an abusive relationship is one of the hardest things someone will ever do. In the end, I was able to do for them (my pig, Tusok and Scottie, Cubbie Roo) what I was not able to do for myself. I would never have wound up on a cattle farm if not for my second pig, Tobie. So, my first pig saved MY life. My second pig led me to the cows so I could save theirs.”
Randie shares how Cows Come Home came to be a sanctuary, and “The Mayor” who turned everything around by sharing a message with Rick Gentry. (The Mayor is a cow, by the way)
In addition she talks about the cold and rainy day that a sweet little calf named “Lou” was born, and how everyone thought he was dead until Rick Gentry saw him blink his eyes. The road to recovery for Lou was long and arduous, until a magical moment happened in Randie’s kitchen after many days and nights of touch and go for the calf, who was living inside Randie’s house. Lou’s love for Silk Soy Milk has become the talk of the town, and his sweet and kind demeanor makes him the perfect greeter for all who visit the sanctuary.
We discuss ways to support Cows Come Home and the work they are doing. The new barn needed for Lou, shelter for the cows in the pasture, and extra hay to make up for what was lost in the drought season.
Randie talks about opportunities to visit and tour the sanctuary, as well as unique volunteer needs. To learn more about this incredible sanctuary and the work they are doing, please visit the website and follow on social media.