Help Kat Harrison Recover from Violence

Recovery Fund for Kathleen Harrison

Update: Thank you all for your loving contributions. We are so pleased to have this opportunity to support our wonderful teacher and friend when she needs it most. Clearly, Kat has touched so many people's lives, and we are glad to gift this time to her for healing and writing.

Showing up for our elders is important, and Kat is so deserving of the space and comfort from which to continue to share her teachings.

Writing has been Kat’s refuge since this event and we are hopeful that this community offering will enable her to finally write a book.

Kat Harrison is a treasured educator and elder (age 72) in our interwoven psychedelic, herbal, plant and fungi loving communities.  She has dedicated her life to helping people restore their connection to the natural world through learning about the quiet, amazing ways of plants and fungi. As an ethnobotanist, Kat has guided thousands of students back into relationship with the green world around them and has shared her ethnobotanical knowledge in diligent awareness and reciprocity with indigenous people and with the earth. 

In mid January a random and violent act was committed against Kat in her home in Occidental, CA. A man, who seemed to be suffering from a psychotic break induced by Methamphetamine use, broke down her door, smashed up her dining room, attacked her and proceeded to strangle her. Thankfully, a neighbor heard her yells for help and came to her rescue, chasing off the assailant. Kat was treated for injuries as police tracked down the perpetrator and apprehended him, Kat identified him as a man who had grown up in her town.

https://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/news/santa-rosa-man-arrested-on-suspicion-of-assaulting-woman-and-fleeing-deputi/ 

For a period of weeks, Kat had to go into hiding until it was determined how the assailant would be charged and whether he would be offered bail, which at any moment could have put her back in danger. Kat incurred many personal expenses in getting connected to safe housing and being treated for this trauma – both physical and emotional.

She also received ongoing medical attention and was monitored for potential exposure to COVID. Only recently was Kat able to go home once the county DA charged her assailant with Attempted Murder and removed the option of bail. She is now able to more fully attend to the process of recovery, which will take time and require that she step back from her professional work despite the already tenuous financial situation that the pandemic has caused. 

While this was not a motive-driven crime and Kat was a “random” target, the nature of this attack is not random. It is reflective of glaring gaps in our collective culture and social welfare system.  The combination of untreated mental illness, abuse of dangerous drugs and barely submerged rage and frustration can erupt in violence that can affect anyone, even in peaceful, rural communities like West Sonoma County. 

Anyone who knows Kat also knows how incredibly resilient she is. She is connected to caring resources for trauma support and is benefitting from a long relationship with reflective writing to process this trauma. And of course, she has strong allies in the plants and fungi, and her loving family. What Kat does need at this time is financial support to help her with these unexpected expenses, including income that was lost during this time and which will continue to be diminished while she recovers. Additionally, her earnings had already been crucially reduced by the pandemic's effects of ceasing all in-person programs at Botanical Dimensions' Ethnobotany Library, which Kat has run as an educational center since 2015. 

As Kat's friends and family, we are asking for your support to help Kat recover peacefully from this violent trauma. We are so thankful she survived, and we want her to feel as comfortable and secure as possible while she navigates the healing process.

Kat has given so much to others and never hesitates to help anyone in need. We are grateful that we now have a chance to come together- as a community who has been deeply inspired by her-to give back.
  • Adam Bilowus 
    • $75 
    • 11 d
  • Anonymous 
    • $25 
    • 1 mo
  • Anonymous 
    • $55 
    • 1 mo
  • Michael Schwab 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Anonymous 
    • $75 
    • 1 mo
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Rachel Budde 
Organizer
Nevada City, CA
Kathleen Harrison 
Beneficiary