World Vegan Month, which falls in November, celebrates all things vegan and is a great time for many people to try an animal-friendly lifestyle. If you are already vegan, then you're aware of the benefits that a cruelty-free lifestyle offers - both when it comes to protecting animals, being kinder to our planet, and doing what's best for your own health. But this month is a great occasion to take kind living even further by spreading the word and getting more involved. Here are some tips that will make you a more powerful advocate for kindness and compassion.
Champion a cause online. Online activism might seem like a futile task, but in reality, those few seconds spent on a signature or sending a pre-drafted letter to your elected official can, when added up with thousands of others, create a ripple effect that leads to change. So sign, share, make your voice heard. And elected officials want to hear from their constituents, so if you are passionate about changing something in your community, speak up.
Host a potluck. Any new vegans in your friendship circle? Make them feel welcome (and highlight the deliciousness of plant-based food!) by hosting a party where everyone cooks and brings their favourite vegan dish. Hot tip: invite non-vegans too. It will be a culinary experience to remember - and any plant-sceptics will be converted.
Volunteer at an animal sanctuary. Running a sanctuary is hard work and owners are constantly struggling. In the warmer months, visitors flock to see the animals frolicking in the grass - but as the cold and wet weather descends, times get even tougher for the people fighting every day to give animals a new chance at life. So spend a day helping out in any way you can. Prepare for one of the most rewarding experiences of your life, one that will truly remind you of the "why" behind your choice to go vegan.
Make a reading list. This month is a great time to get (even more) educated and expand your knowledge about the cause. Head to the library or fire up your online bookstore account to fill up on great new reads. Tips include This is Vegan Propaganda by Ed Winters, Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer, and Animalkind by Ingrid Newkirk and Gene Stone. For more on vegan fashion, pick up Total Ethics Fashion by Emma Håkansson or Vegan Style by Sascha Camilli.
Mentor new vegans. World Vegan Month is a time when many people will try vegan living - so online vegan challenges will see sign-ups soar. If you are a seasoned vegan, why not offer your assistance as a mentor to newbies? Challenge22 has a mentorship programme where experienced vegans can be on call for newer recruits, helping to answer questions on anything from best protein sources to where to shop for vegan shoes. Sign up and help a new vegan stay on the compassionate path.