"May we be guided by our compassionate hearts rather than our cultural habits." Colleen Patrick-Goudreau
To foster awareness and increase compassion through education on the treatment of animals in rodeos. To inspire the protection of animals used for human entertainment. Through cultivating compassion
and kindness, we aim to create a transformative impact on the lives of non-human animals
and enhance the well-being of humans and their communities.
COPAK began as a grassroots organization to bring education and awareness of the treatment of animals used in what is considered as an all-American cultural event - the rodeo.
The founder, a psychotherapist with a passion and respect for non-human animals and humans alike, was raised in rural America with sheep, goats, chickens, dogs, cats, and a cow.
This upbringing instilled in her a profound appreciation for the shared experiences of connection, community, joy, fear, and pain between her and the animals.
The founder was invited to her first rodeo - the Sisters Rodeo- 34 years ago and had a visceral experience as she witnessed the calf roping and the use of animals for human entertainment. Her eyes were opened to how animals are regarded in our cultural traditions, entertainment, and the law.
Conversations with friends and family, some of whom participated in rodeos, unveiled a lack of awareness about the suffering endured by animals unwillingly thrust into such events. Many believed the rodeos they participated in or attended were different and more humane.
Members of COPAK understand that increasing compassion for non-human animals positively impacts the human experience and safety in one's community. Conversely, the correlation between violence toward animals and violence toward humans is a well-documented and sobering reality.
United by a shared belief in the inherent goodness of people, the COPAK team holds hope that through education, we can raise awareness and foster compassion. In doing so, we aim to enrich the lives of non-human animals and humans.