Animal Rights Zone

Fighting for animal liberation and an end to speciesism

Hello everyone

I've recently joined this website and wouldn't mind some guidance from people more experienced in animal rights / veganism.

Probably best I start with my background. From an early age, I've felt that eating meat was wrong. My Grandad and uncle were meat traders so as a child I was exposed occasionally to slaughterhouses. I didn't see animals being slaughtered, but I do remember being put off by the meat being chopped up. The smell was awful.

Through childhood and into adulthood I ate meat, as it was the done thing, although I never ate much, and always felt it just wasn't right. Twelve years ago I became a vegetarian.

About a year ago, I decided to go vegan after watching meatvideo.com, although I have lapsed a few times when out with family at restaurants. More recently I read Allen Carr's Easyweigh (I'm not overweight - I was just interested in his thinking) and then started doing more research. I've watched Gary Yourofsky's speech, and films like 'Earthlings' and I'm now 100% committed to leading a fully vegan lifestyle.

I'm a businessman and have two businesses which are increasingly becoming successful. I've always enjoyed the buzz of business, but at the age of 40 I feel I should be doing something more worthwhile. One of my companies pretty much runs without me, the other (www.fitshow.co.uk) is a new venture so I'm currently looking to find an MD who can take over some of my duties.

I have volunteered for various charities, and spent a lot of time in India and Malawi helping raise money for underprivileged children. I've organised bike rides which have raised over £200,000 in the last few years as part of this work.

But, I now feel it is time I had a career change, and spent more of my time trying to convince people to convert to veganism. I have converted a few friends to veganism, but I want to think far bigger.

So, I would appreciate any guidance which helps me to choose the correct path. I'm good at internet marketing, so I intend to build a website.

I'd like to try doing something similar to Gary Yourofsky but in the UK. But, I'd do it in a different way. Less opinion, and more just showing the facts. Explaining with good visuals and supporting video why choosing a plant based diet is better for the animals, better for the environment, and better for us. I don't enjoy public speaking but I certainly feel it's worth trying.

Any advice which helps me find the most effective way to utilise my time would be appreciated.

Many thanks

Matthew

 

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I recommend that you contact both Kim Stallwood and Robin Lane in the UK and Jose Valle and Sharon Nunez (the founders of Igualdad Animal/Animal Equality) in Spain.  

You may find the information these folks provided us in their ARZone interviews:

Kim is a veteran animal advocate who has held leadership positions with some of the world’s foremost animal welfare organisations, including Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection (BUAV), People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PeTA) and The Animals’ Agenda, ASI. http://arzone.ning.com/profiles/blogs/transcript-of-kim-stallwoods

Robin has campaigned tirelessly for veganism & animal rights since the early 80's and was also one of the organisers of the first UK Vegan Festival in 1998, held in London, which would later become the London Vegan Festival.  In 2004 Robin became involved in the Vegan Campaigns (London) group, and renamed the UK Vegan Festival to the London Vegan Festival. Some consider organising the first ever vegan festival in London to be one of Robin’s finest achievements. http://arzone.ning.com/profiles/blogs/transcript-of-robin-lanes

Jose is an animal rights activist and a vegan, who believes we must abolish slavery and promote equality. That's what he tries to do with his life. He is a co-founder of Igualdad Animal (Animal Equality), an international non-profit organisation dedicated to achieving equal consideration and respect for animals. http://arzone.ning.com/profiles/blogs/transcript-of-jose-valles 

Thank you Tim. I did have a look at the animal equality site and liked what they were doing. I will connect with these people. Many thanks.

You're welcome and many you have great success!!

Matthew Glover said:

Thank you Tim. I did have a look at the animal equality site and liked what they were doing. I will connect with these people. Many thanks.

I hope you'll keep everybody here updated Matthew. 

Thanks Billy. I will.

I've been in touch with Kim. He was very helpful and suggested I get in contact with Jasmijn at the Vegan Society, so I've sent her a message through the website.

Many thanks

Another group that is doing amazing work is Food Empowerment Project

Food Empowerment Project (F.E.P.) is a volunteer-based non-profit organization that seeks to create a more just and sustainable world by recognizing the power of one’s food choices. The organization was founded in 2006 by lauren Ornelas, who continues to lead it.[1]

Organization and mission

The organization is composed of a team of activists from various animal rightsenvironmental and social justice organizations.[2] They work on encouraging healthy food choices that reflect a more compassionate society by spotlighting the abuse of animals on farms, the depletion of our natural resources, unfair working conditions for produce workers, and the lack of access to healthy foods in low-income areas.[3] In January 2011, the organization began researching companies that make vegan products containing chocolate to find out if they source their cocoa beans from countries where child labor and slavery can still be found. The frequently updated list of companies is available at http://www.foodispower.org/chocolatelist.htm


http://www.foodispower.org/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_Empowerment_Project

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Food-Empowerment-Project/9151801106

Hi Billy

Thank you your help. 

The link to Lauren Ornelas was very useful as it lead me to this book: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Striking_at_the_Roots the topic of which is just what I need at this early stage of my campaigning.

Regards

Matthew

Thanks for posting that link Matthew, looks like a great resource.

Hi Billy

You asked me to keep you all updated so here's the latest with my progress.

I'm even more convinced that I need to engage with non-vegans with a speech. So, my thoughts are I hire a local theatre and invite my friends, family and acquaintances to come to the launch of my new 'campaign'.

I have in my mind something like a TED talks or Al Gore type set with a large screen and professionally produced presentation with graphics and videos to support the speech. I will explain in the first instance that I'm here to explain why I'm a vegan, and that I'm here to explain why I have chosen to have such an extreme diet. Then, the rough format of the presentation is:

Sentient beings - I'm reading the Inner World of Farm Animals so this will form the basis. Pictures and video of happy farm animals in the background.

Factory Farming - tell the audience how it is with relevant video of slaughterhouses, transportation, factory farms etc.

Environment - CO2, species loss, pollution, water etc.

The benefits of a vegan diet - statistics about obesity, heart attacks and how a vegan diet is more healthy than a standard British (Western) diet.

Q&A

Followed by a vegan buffet where the audience can experience good vegan food and drinks.

I get a professional TV crew in to film everything, including the reactions of the audience before, during and after. It needs to be well lit, good sound, and feel like an event.

This would then be the launch of a website and the campaign. In theory, I could then take the presentation to universities or wherever depending on how well it goes.

How does this sound?

Matthew

PS. I need a name for the website campaign. I've registered speciesism.co.uk but people have told me it's too intellectual for the lay man. I've also considered compassionforanimals. Any suggestions welcome...

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