Compassion Ranch

Terry Slaughter (center) with one of his Camp Rockhurst student campers
plus Dr. David Dyson and Patriot.

Compassion Ranch is the ranch of Life Leaders Institute and Ranch. Compassion Ranch is a positive program providing care for horses in sanctuary who help teach compassion, courage, cooperation, and other character traits mandated to teach in schools. Families and groups of students, volunteers, and professionals can visit to learn, gain experience, and develop through programs and workshops.

See the animals, follow on social media, or donate to see your opportunities and support.

See photos and information about some of our events below and more at the new
web site for Compassion Ranch.

Camp Rockhurst had impact on kids!

“I cannot thank you enough for the sacrifice of your time and money to make an impact on our campers. They loved it!!!! We all did. Your entire team (humans and animals) were amazing and the day was magical!!! What a blessing it was indeed.”

-Terry Slaughter-
Founder, Camp Rockhurst, and Executive Creative Director, Devote Studio

Students and teachers in Camp Rockhurst (Rosedale Community of Birmingham) meet Patriot and Dr. David Dyson. Students met horses, opened the program with the Pledge of Allegiance, learned basics of horsemanship, faced fear and added courage to mount and sit on a horse, learned more of compassionate care, and had a photo taken to share.

Patriotism in Action of Life Leaders America has coordinated or supported providing the riderless horse for Veterans Day in the founding city Birmingham. Thousands of adults and children line the streets.

Life Leaders Ranch programs support Patriotism in Action by arranging for horses in patriotic events such as the National Veterans Day Parade and Tribute to the Founder of Veterans Day program in Birmingham’s Linn Park (2006-2019). The artist for this painting above presented the work to Col. Bob (USA Retired) and Nancy Barefield, chairs of Patriotism in Action of Life Leaders, who donated the art to the Alabama National Cemetery.

Programs and Services

  • Life Leaders Ranch Day (students)–Pinterest Board (Life Leaders Ranch Day for Camp Rockhurst)
  • Compassion Camp
  • Plan for School and College-Career-Character Readiness
  • School class field trips, classes, seminars, day camps
  • School administrators and/or teachers planning, team building…
  • College student classes, seminars, workshops
  • College administrators and/or faculty team planning, team building…
  • Coaching for executives, teams, and individuals served by nonprofits
  • Customized topics to provide on site or at your school or organization: Plan for School, College, Profession; Best-Self Leadership, Leadership Lessons Learned from Horses; Sustainable Agriculture…
  • Freedom Fence for Your Cats and Dogs: photos, info on materials, web page, presentations on why and how. Freedom Fence not only protects your pets from predators and dangers like cars on roads, it protects wildlife from your pets (cats kill over a billion birds every year).
  • Life Leaders is a nonprofit providing programs and public service, not a place. Animals and Events are hosted at Triple D Ranch and Farm.

Camp Rockhurst student meets a horse for the first time. In a safe way, he transformed from a state of fear to courage to trust and try. Next time, he will be more likely to not let fear keep him from trying to grow and serve. And, he learned of a few abandoned animals and the importance of providing compassionate care to animals and humans.

A Sample Program

Principles and Practices


  • Animal sanctuary for horses, ponies, donkeys, dogs, cats, and wildlife
  • Work and play with people to have purpose
  • Support teachers and parents with programs and resources to help students develop compassion and courage.
  • Practice Love ’em and Lead ’em Leadership (natural horsemanship)
  • Advocate adoption and no-kill shelters except for mercy euthanasia
  • Support honored tradition of riderless horses at Veterans Day

Camp Rockhurst kids head to the barn, pond, and walking trail…


  • Students learning about and working with animals develop fitness, responsibility, education, courage, and instinctive personal leadership
  • People seeking to Master Goliaths can plan, renew, and begin action
  • Veterans Making Comebacks can heal better from traumas and broken trusts connecting with animals
  • People often treat other people and animals about the same when no one is looking so teaching higher levels of animal care and rights also helps human behavior, ethics, and social relationships in society.
Pike Video Snapshot (3-16-2017
Triple D Ranch and Farm, home of Compassion Ranch and Life Leaders, is a good place for team meetings, events, and filming videos, such as this one where David prepared a message for university students and alumni.


Grandfather teaching his grandchild about horses, care…
Children can learn to pick and enjoy organically grown fruits and vegetables.

Educational Service to Students on Animals, Agriculture on a Homestead

Dr. Dyson interviews University of Montevallo professor Dr. Susan Caplow after speaking on sustainable agriculture and personal leadership at Caplow’s “Environment and Society” class.

Dr. Dyson visited two sections of the University of Montevallo’s “Environment and Society” class to lecture on “Agricultural Sustainability and Personal Environmental Leadership.” Please feel free to use the following resources and share them with others!

Dr. Dyson speaks on “Agricultural Sustainability and Personal Environmental Leadership” at the University of Montevallo. (Slides and audio)

Farm Principles and Practices

  • Grow fruits and vegetables organically using space at Triple D Farm
  • Teach classes on Sustainable Agriculture & Environmental Leadership

Uses of Farm Grown Food

  • Feed animals naturally grown foods
  • Feed wildlife
  • Donate food to veterans in homeless shelters
  • Show and share food grown with students in lectures and classes.

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