The first Catharsis on the Mall was the dream-child of members of the DC Burning Man community and Rick Doblin, founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), our Fiscal Sponsor. Together, they envisioned a unique event that provided a space for healing at the heart of America. Since then, the artists, activists, and allies associated with our local Burner contingent have had the distinct honor of organizing and hosting Catharsis.

Catharsis lives on the National Mall because Americans in every movement for change have gathered there to make their voices heard by those in power. Catharsis is, foremost, a free speech demonstration. Next year’s theme, A Vision of Haven, means we will be protesting for our innate human right to the safety, security, and freedom that comes with sanctuary.

We strive to provide a container for social and cultural innovation. “Catharsis” is release, relief, growth, and transformation. We believe Catharsis on the Mall should be accessible and welcoming to all people, which is why Catharsis will always be free to attend. We need your help to keep this special event free and open to all.

As CotM grows to include more corners of DC, advocates and artists are working to extend Catharsis beyond the National Mall. This means we are working to become a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, an undertaking that is time consuming and labor intensive. Extending Catharsis beyond the Mall also means we’re expanding our scope farther than ever before. We’re forging new partnerships with local organizations, reaching out to more local artists, and bringing an all-new iteration of Catharsis to the Mall this May.

As you make your #GivingTuesday gifts, please consider giving the gift of healing, art, and community. Our team of volunteers work year-round to make Catharsis possible. You can support our work by donating today. If you can’t make a donation, sharing our fundraiser on social media is tremendously helpful!

Thanks to a generous anonymous donor, your gift will be MATCHED dollar for dollar. AND the funds raised today and through the end of the year will go directly towards funding our Art Grants for 2020.

With gratitude,
– The Catharsis Trunk

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