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Vegan Outreach is a 501(c)(3)
nonprofit organization dedicated to
reducing the suffering of farmed animals
by promoting informed, ethical eating.

Donations to VO are fully tax-deductible.
VO’s tax identification no. is #86-0736818.

Vegan Outreach
POB 1916, Davis, CA 95617-1916



Vegan Outreach Enewsletter  •  October 16, 2013

Notes from Vegan Outreach

Vic Sjodin

AAC Amazing!


Even though it’s only mid-October, Adopt a College activists have already reached more than 521,000 students at over 450 schools!

The unstoppable Vic Sjodin (right) has handed a booklet directly to 45,000+ students already this semester, and Steve Erlsten and Rachel Shippee have each reached more than 40,000 students! And the amazing traveling team of Jon Camp and Lauren Walker have reached well over 60,000 students with Vegan Outreach booklets!

VO’s southeast coordinator, Dawn Ratcliffe (below), is also on the road. Dawn supplied one of our all-time favorite insights:

Dawn Ratcliffe

Since becoming vegan in 1995, I have handed a Vegan Outreach booklet to over 170,000 individuals. Although I started using VO literature early on in my activism, I still felt that leafleting by itself wasn’t as effective as protesting every weekend. I couldn’t have been more wrong, especially when I looked at the amount of time I spent organizing protests, calling activists to attend the protests, making signs, etc. Maybe I felt that since I had invested so much time and effort, protesting had to be more effective than simply handing out leaflets for an hour or two. Thank goodness that Vegan Outreach continues to steer activists in the right direction!

Congratulations to all leafleters and donors – you are changing the world every day!!


From “Your Daily Dose of Vegan Outreach!” & Jack Norris RD Blogs


Resource of the Week

Looking for veg-friendly restaurants? Then check out, an online guide to veg-friendly restaurants and shopping! VegGuide has over 16,000 entries worldwide, and there are all sorts of features to help you find them. You can search for entries near a specific address, look for only vegan-friendly places, and much more. VegGuide is a community-driven website, and anyone can rate an entry, write a review, or add a new entry.

Please submit your nominees for product of the week via this page; previous entries here.


Notes from Our Members

Student at WSU
Above is one of the WSU students reached by Chelsea Collins (below) and John Oberg.

I was so stoked to be joined at Wayne State by Australia’s #1 leafleter, Chelsea Collins! Her enthusiasm for this work is undeniable, and we set the all-time one-day record for any school in the state of Michigan – 3,740 students were handed an Even If You Like Meat booklet, and 37 wanted Guides. The leafleting was great – super high take-rate and really positive reception from the students. We each heard things like “this is so sad” and “I love what you guys are doing, this is so cool.”
     Of course with most of this work we never get to hear about the results, but I do have this epic story to conclude with: My friend Stephanie Bay (a vegan I met at VegFest who helped leaflet the Warped date with us) texted me a day after we leafleted and let me know that one of her sorority sisters messaged her asking for advice about becoming vegan. She told her that she was inspired to try to go veg because somebody handed her a VO booklet on WSU’s campus! That “somebody” would be one of us – this work really does pay off!
—John Oberg, 9/4/13

Chelsea Collins at WSU

At Montgomery College, Helena found a booklet in the cafeteria and set off to find who was passing them out. Well, she found me! She was so happy that the school was being leafleted and wants to volunteer the next time I’m around. A really nice couple stopped and asked about our organization after they received booklets at the previous class change. They thanked VO for being there today and said it was a great cause! Vegans in the making right there.

Students at Montgomery College
Kassy sends this pic from Montgomery College: “Shocked to learn the horrors of factory farming! The student on the far right is already veg.”

     At George Washington University, Bo stopped to tell me that he was happy to get a booklet. He was vegetarian for a while until he read The Vegetarian Myth by Lierre Keith. I asked him what about the book changed his mind on being vegetarian. He brought up the purity argument: that no matter how many animals we do not eat, human existence will never be able to never hurt animals in some way. In short, I explained to him the idea that being vegetarian or vegan is not about being pure or perfect, but about doing the best we can to hurt as few animals as we can. He seemed to click with the idea of non-purism. (It’s effective and brings about positive change? Go figure!) He promised to read the booklet again, and was happy to get a Guide!
—Kassy Ortega, 9/9/13

About a month ago, a student that I tutored was leaving to go home to Korea. Her last week in the US, we went to Portland and ate at Native Foods – her first meal in a vegan restaurant. She also got a vegan tour of Whole Foods. When she asked me if vegans eat honey, I explained the goal of reducing suffering rather than trying to achieve purity and how it applies to different situations, honey, restaurant meals, etc. She said, “I’m really happy to hear that because I was thinking that it’s too hard to be vegan.”
—Nettie Schwager, 9/9/13

Brock at UK

Lauren and I set a new record at Eastern Kentucky U – 2,200 students reached, and good conversations. For example, Andrew, an earnest and sweet dude who goes to EKU, let me know that he was straight-edge and has a lot of respect for vegans. We talked about how even cutting back on animal products was a huge step forward.
     Long hot day at the University of Kentucky, where Lauren and I set an all-time record for the state, reaching 3,600 students! My favorite interaction was with Brock [right]. He let me know that receiving a VO booklet on campus two years led to him going vegetarian. And then a year ago, on his one-year anniversary of going veg, he went vegan, which he’s been for a year now.
—Jon Camp (below, leafleting UK), 9/10/13

Jon Camp at UK

Reached nearly 2,000 students at Cal State Fullerton. A student [below, center] came back after class and now wants to go veg; got a Guide and some encouragement. Later met Amber [below, right], who wants to eat far less meat; also asked for a booklet and Guide to give to her bestie. Lastly, met Anita [below, left], who had been veg for two weeks a few years ago; after getting a booklet today, she was amped to give it another try. We spoke at length, and she took an extra booklet and Guide for her friend. Also had a convo with a very receptive amateur bodybuilder about vegan proteins.
—Vic Sjodin, 9/9/13

Anita at CSUF Student at CSUF Amber at CSUF

At CW Post, one student came back after reading the booklet to tell me that she agrees with the information a lot, and that she is cutting back a lot on eating meat. Rechelle [below, left] got a booklet from me last year, and went pescetarian, and then vegan two months ago! Then met Lauren and Ketan who started a campus group, and now want to go vegan! They all received a Guide. Six people gave me their emails, will introduce them and past emails to Lauren and Ketan. Of the 6, 4 said they want to leaflet!
     Great discussions at Hofstra U! I met Nipun [below, right], who started at Brandeis and got their cafeterias to go cage free! Met Ana who had been vegan, got a kidney stone, which her doctor said was from tofu, and she went back to eating meat. She really wants to go back to vegan, especially after reading the Compassionate Choices. Gave her Jack’s website and a Guide, and we talked a bit. She is going to try again. Siobhan was vegan, stopped, and is now motivated to being vegan again, too! Louis and I discussed cutting back more on meat, milk, and egg consumption; gave him a Guide. Finally, met Kelsy who said, “You gave me one of these at Norwalk Community College, and I went vegetarian!”
—Karen James, 9/10/13

Rechelle at LIU Post Nipun at Hofstra U

First day of my Ohio vacation started out cold and rainy. I was thrilled to meet up with Jen and Stefanie to destroy Bowling Green State. Jen [Black, below] runs an animal advocacy group in Toledo and was able to come for most of the day. Stefanie is the president of the campus group and was able to join us for a couple hours in between her classes. Students were super-receptive! A number asked about getting involved and I referred them to Stefanie. Students even came up to Jen to ask for leaflets! Talked to a few students who were working on going veg, and a couple who had tried but felt they needed meat, so gave them harm-reduction ideas. A professor was interested in using our lit for an ethics class.
     Second day of vacation was a dizzying 96 degrees at Kent State. Great questions, comments, and conversations. For example, one student told me that as a result of receiving a booklet, he and his whole family had gone vegan!
—Leslie Patterson, 9/10/13

Jen Black at BGSU

Good day at CUNY Brooklyn! I had a veg mom who wanted booklets to give to her daughter and her friends. I met a vegan from Florida who said she knew no one else here that was vegan and was really interested in getting involved to volunteer and to meet others! The best was when a girl took one, rolled it up, and hit her friend on the head with it while saying, “Yea! I’m vegetarian!”
—Lisa Drapkin, 9/10/13

Record day at Sacramento State, where I reached over 2,400 students. Great conversations, too. Jennifer is interested in getting involved for the animals. Another student is currently vegetarian and wants to go vegan, but her parents are deeply concerned. The Guide to Cruelty-Free Eating I gave her should help her go vegan while addressing her parents’ worries.
—Steve Erlsten, 9/6/13

Gina, Elaine Vigneault, and Niala Wesley at CSN

The Vegas Veg crew [Gina, Elaine Vigneault, and Niala Wesley, right] very quickly reached 1,000 students at the College of Southern Nevada. One guy was worried about building muscle on a plant diet but after hearing that there are vegan bodybuilders he gladly took a Guide to learn more about veg nutrition. A woman said she was proud of us and we were doing good work. A man came back and asked, “So chicken is out but why is turkey ok?” and so I explained that he was pointing to TOFUrky not turkey. He said, “Oh, I guess I should read this!”
—Elaine Vigneault, 9/9/13

I’ve been recovering from a bad sprain, so I was very happy to be able to get out there to leaflet again. By the way, when the sprain happened and the pain was intense, all I could think about was the pain endured by farmed animals and how they don’t get any help or comfort. My thoughts went to how they get the opposite; they get whipped, prodded, kicked, dragged, and then they lose their lives. Along with the physical pain, they are frightened and bewildered. I can’t even imagine what they endure. They are individuals, and the pain felt by each and every one of them matters – so we leaflet and speak up for them. Thank you, all!
     When offering the VO booklets at Southern Maine Community College, I heard comments such as, “I’m with you on this one,” “Cool,” “Sweet,” and “Thanks for doing this.” One young man said he plans to write a paper about the information. A young woman thought I was there because of a current animal cruelty news story, where two local female teenagers briefly microwaved a kitten (the kitten survived). Of course there is public outrage but, as we know, most of the people expressing outrage are happily eating cooked animals without giving them any thought. I was glad to have the opportunity to discuss compassion for all animals.
—Lana Smithson, 9/9/13


Prevent Suffering!

Vegan Outreach is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing the suffering of farmed animals by promoting informed, ethical eating.

All donations are fully tax-deductible.

Vegan Outreach

POB 30865, Tucson, AZ 85751-0865

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