To foster compassion and respect for all living beings and the environment by educating youth and teachers in Humane Education.
HEART was incorporated in November of 2001 and operates as a 501(c) (3) non-profit public charity.
HEART is dedicated to helping schools comply with New York State’s Humane Education laws, which include: 1) Section 809 of the NYS Education Law, requiring all public elementary schools to offer instruction in the humane treatment of animals and lessons on the importance of spaying and neutering; and 2) Project SAVE (Safe Schools Against Violence in Education) legislation, requiring instruction in character education in grades K-12. HEART has expanded to the Chicago area where we are also working on improving adherence with Illinois state humane education laws. HEART helps increase compliance with these laws through the following services:
- Humane Living Program An integrated character and humane education instructional program for students of all ages.
- Teacher Training Professional workshops and classroom presentations that introduce humane and character education to teachers and provide them with the tools to implement this instruction in daily classroom lessons.
- Humane Education Consulting Individual guidance and instruction to administrators and teachers on how humane education can be infused into school curricula.
- Advocacy Raising awareness about and securing support for humane education in the educational and governmental sectors.
- Create better students, compassionate citizens and contributors to the greater community
- Foster a sense of responsibility for children to act upon their personal beliefs
- Cultivate empathy for animals, and as a result, decrease animal abuse in our society
- Encourage students to strive for a sustainable society while protecting natural resources and the environment
- Offer an effective way to reduce and prevent violence in school and at home
Who We Serve
HEART offers its services to students of all ages, ethnicities, races, religious beliefs and socio-economic status as well as educators, administrators and community leaders in the greater New York City, Chicago, Indianapolis and Portland areas. HEART envisions replicating its programs throughout the nation.
Why We Teach Humane Education
There is a growing movement among educators and administrators to include character and humane education in their school curricula as a way to teach students respect, responsibility, and empathy, and to help them develop critical thinking and decision-making skills based on compassion, tolerance and integrity. HEART believes that a student’s educational experience should not be limited to traditional teachings, but must also include enrichment instruction to motivate active learning and critical thinking. Children deserve to be provided with comprehensive instruction that will make them not only better students, but also better members of society. Character and humane education programs can contribute to improving student attitudes, behavior, attendance and academic achievement.
The following claims were made for humane and character education by the US National Parent-Teacher Association Congress in 1993:
Children trained to extend justice, kindness, and mercy to animals become more just, kind and considerate in their relations to one another. Character training along these lines in youths will result in men and women of broader sympathies; more humane, more law-abiding in every respect more valuable” citizens. Humane education is the teaching in schools and colleges of the nations the principles of justice, goodwill, and humanity toward all life. The cultivation of the spirit of kindness to animals is but the starting point toward that larger humanity that includes one’s fellow of every race and clime. A generation of people trained in these principles will solve their international difficulties as neighbours and not as enemies.