14 Food Solidarity Initiatives in 14 Days
This year more than ever we wanted to mark World Vegan Day in a meaningful way. With the coronavirus pandemic far from over and the world’s leaders meeting to discuss the climate crisis, we decided to take the opportunity to really show how our food choices relate to these – and to other – critically important issues.
And so, over 14 days, we hosted 14 food initiatives, each in a different country, and each around a different theme. Our aim: to act in solidarity with different communities – from displaced people to children to those fighting for labor rights – whilst also educating more widely about veganism, and its role in creating a kinder, safer, healthier world for all.
Our First Week: Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe
Day 1: Our Kenya country manager arranged meals for children in three Maasai schools to show that veganism is for all. Million Dollar Vegan continues to support these schools which have now become fully vegan.
Day 2: We were in the UK, where we shared a beautiful meal, made with food that would otherwise have gone to waste, with unhoused people, those living in poverty, older adults and refugees to show that veganism is delicious.
Day 3: In Brazil, where so much pristine habitat is being destroyed by the meat industry, we donated slices of vegan cake in solidarity with delivery drivers fighting for labor rights, along with the vital message that veganism is sustainable.
Day 4: In India, we celebrated World Vegan Day alongside Diwali by sharing traditional sweets made with vegan ghee. The festival of lights was the perfect opportunity to showcase that veganism is hope!
Day 5: To share that veganism is about justice, we were in Spain providing meals to both people and animals evacuated due to the volcanic eruption. A second action saw 350 meals delivered to a neighborhood anti-racism association.
Day 6: In Mexico, we focused on the fact that veganism is safer for personal health as well as public health by creating a delicious vegan pozole, a stew traditionally made with several kinds of meat.
Day 7: The end of our first week! We were in France where we partnered with Solidarité Veggie Resto to ensure young refugees in Paris received a decent meal. Our theme today encompasses our movement perfectly: veganism is compassion.
Our Second Week: Asia, Latin America, Africa, North America and Europe
Day 8: We were in the United Arab Emirates working to dispel some common myths around veganism. By giving healthy, tasty, vibrant meals to members of the public, we aimed to show that veganism is nutritious.
Day 9: We were honored to visit two nursing homes in Hungary sharing a vegan version of the popular local dish paprikás krumpli, alongside information about the impact of our food choices. Veganism is empowering for people of all ages.
Day 10: In Argentina, we hosted a cookery workshop for children, served cookies, played games and told animal stories. Today’s theme is obvious! Veganism is the future.
Day 12: To showcase that veganism is global, we were proud to work with a local activist who supports orphaned children in Uganda, not just by offering traditional plant-based foods but also with age-appropriate information about health and the environment.
Day 13: At the heart of all that we do is love, and so – with 50 children – we visited Farm Sanctuary in California to meet the animals rescued from the farming industry and to enjoy a beautiful vegan lunch. Veganism is love.
Day 14: Our final day saw us in Indonesia, working to get supplies to people most severely impacted by the pandemic, and to showcase how veganism reduces the likelihood of future pandemics. Our message to all? Veganism is impactful.
A Milestone: Half A Million Meals
When the pandemic first began, it changed us as an organization. We wanted to do more, build connections across other social justice movements, and act in solidarity with other people fighting for a more just world. We started donating meals, all across the world, and partnering with people and NGOs we deeply admire. We pledged to give one million meals while at the same time working to highlight how small changes we make can have a significant impact in the world. We are delighted to have reached the half-way milestone, with half a million meals now donated.
Our deepest thanks to everyone who has supported us and worked with us. We are proud and honored to be part of a compassionate global movement that seeks to educate, motivate and liberate.
Team Million Dollar Vegan