Author: Plant Powered Planet

Week 52 Animals Australia

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One thing that sucks more than goodbyes is long goodbyes.  So I have begun this at 2.24 pm and have allowed myself exactly one hour to publish it so none of the quality control (ok I probably made some mistakes, I did my best)  and researched facts of yore, just anecdotes, and rambling for the next 58 minutes.

So how did the 52 weeks work out?…Really well, thank you for asking.

I had no sick days from work and I trimmed off a small amount of excess fat and have felt good energy levels and much happier in my heart and mind all round.  It feels good to have made and actually 99% stuck to my first* NY resolution. I thank my ex, who said I never finish anything for providing extra motivation 🙂

(*and probably last- don’t wanna spoil my 99% success rate…!! Why 99%?  Because most of  my wine wasn’t vegan…I’ve been drinking lovely stuff in a fancy 4 litre box, if you would like to know more about vegan alcohol, Barnivore is a great site. Yalumba wines are vegan, kudos to them. Yalumba viognier is lovely which I buy for a ‘lash out’.  Also I have had to wear leather shoes for work and leather gloves for bushland maintenance work.  I think a lot about the animal who was unwillingly involved in their manufacture. Why I am putting this here is to show that perfection is hard to achieve as an imperfect being in an imperfect world, imperfection is not an excuse to give up trying to do the best you can wherever you can.  Oh and also I got Indian takeaway and despite my repeated request for no dairy, the food turned out to be loaded with ghee (clarified butter) rather than waste it, I ate it.  But it is good to be able to share this experience here as a trap for young players…Indian food is great for vegetarians, vegans really need to be diligent.)

Regarding the charities, wow! There are some amazing organisations out there.  Most of the ones I listed are easy to donate to, except for Haytap (Turkey) who had their Paypal cancelled by the government and they were unable to accept my credit card. So the $52 from that week sadly never made it, but all the rest are sorted.  I connected with a few lovely people around the world throught this and if you are travelling overseas, I would definitely recommend researching legitimate charities where you are headed to see if you can help out and who you can meet and share knowledge and passion for compassion with :-).  I almost wish there were more weeks in the year as there are so many other worthy ones, it is amazing what you find when you look.

One I always planned to cover was Soi Dog in Thailand, but it got bumped a couple of times and now it’s week 52 already.  I might give them the Haytap donation.  Suffering is suffering and it is great to alleviate it for any individual.  But one thing that was admirable  about most of the charities I chose to support was how they work to invoke systemic change…changing the way individuals and society treat animals and working towards cutting out the root of much animal suffering.

I will definitely stick with the plant powered lifestyle and continue to advocate for animals…

Oh and I have a little surprise… while this is the end of this particular chapter, its not a complete “So long and thanks for not eating fish” from me…

….Now I have graduated from 52 Charities High School, I am going to work on another project that will bring together all the links and knowledge and news I can find about a animals, the environment, food, events etc. Hang on in there and in a couple of months I will create a post to guide you to the cornucopia of wonderfulness I have planned.

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http://www.animalsaustralia.org/

This is one of my favourite charities that I have supported for many years. It is definitely worth visiting their page and learning about their work.

Animals Australia’s major campaigns are strategically targeting the areas where animals are in greatest need — whether due to extreme cruelty, or due to the vast number of individual animals who are suffering.

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Our work is focused around two strategic areas: investigations to expose animal abuse wherever it occurs, and public awareness initiatives to empower and inspire the community to adopt cruelty-free lifestyle choices.

You can order a free vegetarian starter kit here.

And watch a wonderful video by Lyn White here.

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To the friends I know and to the friends I haven’t met yet who read this, I really thank you!! It was pretty nerve wracking putting it out there, self doubt and all that.

I hope in some way I have contributed something beneficial xxx

1 hour 3 mins. Not bad!

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Week 51 Frog Safe (Australia)

Last night we watched a David Attenborough documentary about fabulous frogs, it really was fabulous!

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2fzuxx

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Definitely worth watching if you’re having a good day, bad day or anything in between.

(A cry is another thing I can heartily recommend if the occasion arises-speaking from very recent experience, it is a very underrated pressure relief tool…cos…unlike frogs…we can’t eat whatever bugs us…images.png)

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frog

http://www.frogsafe.org.au/about_fdr/our_group.shtml

http://www.frogsafe.org.au/about_fdr/frog_hospital.shtml

Frog Safe – if all the world was safe for frogs,

it would be safe for all of us!

For a long time, you have known us as the Frog Decline Reversal Project but we hope you will like us even better as Frog Safe. It is a much shorter name but, no matter which tools we might use for frog conservation, it describes what we do. All our efforts are meant to make the world safe for frogs to live in. At the moment, it is not safe at all.

You have probably heard already that amphibians the world over are disappearing and,

Here in Far North Queensland, we are one of the world’s “hot spots” for frog decline with several high-altitude species already feared extinct.

Instead of newsletters and meetings, we are a very hands-on outfit doing rescue and rehabilitation of amphibians every single day.

The Cairns Frog Hospital is small but our Curator has been receiving sick and injured frogs since August 1998. As of this writing, over 2,800 adult/subadult frogs have been turned in (plus dozens of toads and hundreds of thousands of tadpoles). Most of the injured frogs can be recovered and released back to the wild. Diseased frogs are another story, however.

We encourage members to be active at our facility but being a ‘financial member only’ still helps our work.

 

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All animals desperately need our help and Christmas is a perfect time to show you care through what you eat and where you do (or don’t) spend spend your money.

http://www.animalsaustralia.org/kinder-christmas

https://www.edgarsmission.org.au/guide-kind-christmas/

http://awfw.org/no-animal-gifts/

Here’s to a Hoppy Christmas.

 

What is a frog’s favourite year?

Leap year.

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Week 50 Fish Rescue and Welfare (UK)

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The Vegan Pantry

This week is a mixed lolly bag for you lovely readers…pick out the bits you like (mint leaves) and leave the bits you don’t (skittles)…just don’t skip the really important information on how to keep your money safe under ‘credit cards’.

Tasmania

Last weekend I got my ‘map o’ Tassie‘ out a few times.

Why does this place proudly use an animal sent extinct by humans as its logo?  tas

Talk about flogging a dead tiger.

We saw salmon farms and a salmon hatchery.  There was a Four Corners report on these recently and there  letters to the editor in The Mercury Newspaper (5 Dec 2016) about this.

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Another person talked about the horrors of fishing in general:

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Poor fish really are the forgotten ones. Even I’ve got to week 50 and didn’t have them as a category.  Many people choose to eat fish but not land meats.  Then they call themselves vegetarian. They are not vegetarian.  (And neither was Hitler, just FYI.)

Fish are animals. Vegetarians don’t eat animals.

Domain>Kingdom>Phyllum (or Division)>Class>Order>Family>Genus>Species

Like us, fish are in the Eukaryte Domain, Animalia Kingdom and the Chordata Phyllum. Like us they have intelligence and personalities and feel pain and fear.  

We focus too much on their differences and not their similarities.  Nobody likes the idea of drowning but that is effectively what happens to every landed fish.  There is nothing sporting about fishing.

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More on this next week, but if you know of anyone who is thinking it is a great idea to ‘gift an animal in the name of charity’…please refer them here. 

10 Reasons to Say NO to Farmed Animals as ‘Gifts’

(This was the charity way back in week 45)

Credit Cards

Visa PayWave and Mastercard PayPass ‘tap and go’ technology is being foisted on everyone in Australia with a credit card.  You can’t opt out.  I asked my bank, and got a ‘no’. So I called the head office of the card manufacturer itself to ask if I can disable it or if there are any banks that offer an opt out.  I got a big ‘negatory’ in response, which frankly, is bullshit.  It is my money, how dare they make it so easy to steal.

Google was much more helpful:

http://www.geekrant.org/2014/05/29/disable-paypass-or-paywave-rfid-with-a-light-globe-a-pen-and-a-drill-bit/

…my Visa cards (issued in 2016) looked a bit different on the inside to his, but were both the same as each other even though from different banks.

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 I held it over a bright lamp and marked a spot near the chip where I could see two antenna lines running close to each other….

aa-card-2.then I used a 3mm bit and drilled it out…then took it and tried at self check out…voila…The  Chip/PIN still works but PayWave is a goner.  No more free-for-all for criminals. If you don’t have a drill I have read that you could cut in from the side with scissors up to the same place and it should do the same thing.

They removed credit card signing in favour of PIN for our ‘protection’, then force this on us instead.  Why? It is a big profit generator for Visa and Mastercard.  

If your card gets stolen or skimmed, your account could be emptied before you even realise you have a problem.

This is a disgusting breach of our security, you wouldn’t walk around with wallet full of cash, but this is effectively the same thing.  

Please protect yourself and spread the word! I have made a separate post just for this topic here.

Mower

If your normally reliable mower doesn’t start (or stop) as it should and it doesn’t seem to be the fuel or the spark plug, check that the cable going from the on/off lever is actually working and moving the part which goes into to engine properly :).  

I nearly had to leave the Chordata Phyllum as I blew out my back while wrenching on the starter cord 5,400 times, pretending it was the tie of a credit card exec.

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Not many fish-specific charities to be found, though I did really appreciate the person who took it into her own hands way back around 1989 to print off postcards talking about the cruelty of the live gold fish prizes they had at the Brisbane Show back then.  In my heart I knew it was bad, but I still wanted to do it.  That caring individual helped raise my consciousness a level, and I will never forget it.

Speaking of acquistion of animals, watch the following documentary to see what the ‘land of the free’ does with its freedom to buy anything…I am proud of Australia’s restrictions on exotic (and native) animal ownership.

(Alternative working title…World’s Most Selfish Owners)

 

And last, but not least

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http://fishrescueandwelfare.org/

https://www.facebook.com/Fish-Rescue-and-Welfare-FRW-Fundraising-page-483902061677336/about/

We follow the guidelines and practices of BIAZA, (The British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums).

The aim of the FRW is to help fish and fish keepers with any concerns they may have with any fish being incompatible with their living conditions, by growing too big, becoming aggressive etc. We will do our best to make better any situation that your fish and you find your selves in.
The FRW are happy to offer advice on fish keeping to individuals and groups and also, loan out emergency equipment to those in need. We rehome everything from Neons to Tank Busters.
The rescue makes no judgement on the aquariums we take fish in from, we just get them out of an unsuitable situation.

 

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I told you this week was a mixed bag!

 

 

Credit Card Security-Disabling Tap and Go

Topics covered: Disabling tap and go, destroying cvv number, engraving household items.

Credit Cards

Visa PayWave and Mastercard PayPass ‘tap and go’ RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology is being foisted on people worldwide.  In Australia, you can’t opt out.  I asked my bank, and got a ‘no’.  So I called the head office of the card manufacturer itself to ask if I can disable it, or if there are any banks that offer an opt out.  I got a big ‘negatory’ in response, which, frankly is bullshit.  It is my money, how dare they make it so easy to steal.

Google was much more helpful.

http://www.geekrant.org/2014/05/29/disable-paypass-or-paywave-rfid-with-a-light-globe-a-pen-and-a-drill-bit/

…my Visa cards (issued in 2016) looked a bit different on the inside to his, but were both the same as each other, even though from different banks.

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I held them over a bright lamp and marked a spot near the chip where I could see two antenna lines running close to each other….

aa-card-2.then I used a 3mm bit and drilled it out…then took it and tried at self checkout…et voila…

The Chip/PIN still works but PayWave is a goner.

No more free-for-all for criminals. If you don’t have a drill I have read that you could also cut in from the side with scissors up to the same place and it should do the same thing.

They removed credit card signing in favour of PIN for our ‘protection’, then force this on us instead.  Why? Bigger profits for Visa and Mastercard.  

If your card gets stolen or skimmed, your account could be emptied before you even realise there is a problem.  It allows multiple transactions of up to $100 each to be done with no verification. 

This is a disgusting breach of our security, and in the time you waste trying to sort the mess and get your money back (if you even can), you could have entered your four digit pin 5,400 times…assuming it takes ‘only’ three hours to sort out  (not including the months it might take for a refund) vs taking 2 seconds longer to enter a PIN each time.

Convenience, please!!  I think not having my money stolen is slightly more convenient than this scam.

You can get wallets that block the signal to stop you from getting skimmed, but that doesn’t help if the card itself is accessed.

Its’s not just hardened criminals we should worry about. Many otherwise honest people will often keep the cash as their ‘reward’ if they find a wallet that has simply been lost.  What is to stop them taking advantage of technology if they find your wallet and decide that they ‘deserve’ a reward at your expense, maybe some cigarettes or a tank of fuel?

Cards don’t even need to be defrauded by strangers, how many of us share a home with people we can’t quite trust?

CVV

Another good way to protect yourself from many unauthorised online transactions if your card is stolen is to memorise (and write in code somewhere) the 3 digit ‘secret’ CVV number in the signature panel of your credit card, then render these numbers unreadable on your card..I scratched it out with a flat blade screw driver then went over it with marker pen just to be double sure.

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Engraving

It doesn’t hurt to engrave valuables around the home either.  The standard format is initials, date of birth and state… eg:  AA 1/1/11 NSW.  To protect your privacy, maybe leave out the year of birth.  This will help prove the items are yours if they are stolen and subsequently recovered.  Some police stations can assist with engraving, just ask!

I’m not paranoid, I just don’t wanna give anybody a free ride at my expense.

Protect yourself and spread the word! This also appears in brief in Week 50.

https://www.choice.com.au/money/credit-cards-and-loans/credit-cards/articles/visa-paywave-and-mastercard-paypass-security

 

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Just spotted this…aa card 3.jpg…Page 4 of The Age, 9 December 2016.  Ridiculous.  These things are crime bait.

Week 49 The Movement for Compassionate Living (UK)

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Last week, two mums I work with started a conversation about their young children showing an interest in animal rights and vegetarianism, after people outside the family had told them about where meat and milk come from.

Both of the mothers were pretty unhappy about this.  They preferred their children to be kept in the dark and were actively discouraging their children from this path.

I understand being a parent already has many challenges and at first this is may look like just another unwelcome one, but surely part of being a good parent is nurturing the emotional growth of kids, not just the physical?

If kids are taught from a young age that convenience is more important than compassion, and hypocrisy is preferable to honesty, then they don’t have a very good teacher.

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Isn’t it unkind to children to feed them something they may choose not to eat if they knew the truth, especially when that ‘something’ is trashing the planet they are to inherit?

Besides the obvious and immediate animal cruelty that ‘business as usual’ entails, the actual future of the earth’s habitability is being jeopardised by animal agriculture.

It is the SINGLE greatest contributor to deforestation, water wasGolden Onion trophy, designed and produced by Georgia artist Melissa Harriste and and climate change.  It also diverts vast amounts of grains and legumes that could be more economically diverted to directly feed needy humans.

Therefore the SINGLE best way to take care of current and future generations is to take animal products off their pedestal and put plants products there instead.
Please watch Cowspiracy for a much better explanation- you will feel much smarter after watching it! (It is not a harrowing watch like some animal welfare movies so don’t be put off.)

 

I hope one day parents will feel really proud to have sentient children who have the heart to look outward, rather than just inward.  These kids are volunteering to eat veggies! download

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http://www.mclveganway.org.uk/

https://www.facebook.com/TheMovementForCompassionateLiving/

The Movement for Compassionate Living works to spread awareness about the true nature of animal exploitation, to promote alternative methods of plant-based food production and to share knowledge about how a happy, healthy and sustainable vegan lifestyle can be achieved.

MCL promotes:

– a way of life that is free of the exploitation and slaughter of sentient beings, that is possible for all the world’s people and that is sustainable within the resources of the planet.

– lifestyles that depend as much as possible on locally produced goods, thus avoiding the resource wastage and pollution of unnecessary transport and packaging.

– vegan-organic methods of horticulture and agriculture that use no animals or animal by-products and are free from artificial fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides.

– the planting of trees, especially on the land freed from livestock farming.

We publish leaflets, booklets and a 4-monthly journal, “New Leaves”, which contains articles to inspire, inform and give practical help. MCL answers queries, runs stalls and holds meetings to gather guidance from members. All labour is voluntary.

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The following is a statement by the American Dietetic Association which was published in their 2009 Position paper:

“It is the position of the American Dietetic Association that appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. Well-planned vegetarian diets are appropriate for individuals during all stages of the lifecycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood and adolescence, and for athletes.”

 

Week 48 Food For Life (Slovenia/International)

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This week saw the presentation of the ARIA (The Australian Recording Industry Association Music) Awards, so I thought I would come up with five Top Fives of my own, listed in no particular order…

5 Great Plant Powered Snacks

Popcorn – (cover bottom of pan in a good layer of oil, add kernels when oil is very hot – a kernel will start to spin by itself at this point, add salt now for more even coverage, leave lid askew to release moisture, keep heat up high until fury of popping subsides, immediately remove popcorn from pan before it burns.)

Eda Mame – Young soy beans. Sprinkle defrosted beans in pods with salt, or, cook beans, pod and all, in pepper and garlic.  At end stir through some veg oyster sauce and remove from heat.  In either case you don’t eat the pods but you will still be able to enjoy the seasoning as you eat the beans.

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Peanuts – Roast your own at home under the grill at high heat, or for something different, boil in salted water for about 15mins until soft.  Keeps in fridge for a few days.

Mini Spring rolls, samosas or onion rings – available in supermarket freezer. Lemon served with onion rings is a great sub for calamari.  Best way to cook all fried snacks is on a cafe style sandwich press.

Crispy Mix – Make your own assortment of nuts, pretzels, rice crackers, popcorn, biscuits, dried fruit etc and store in an airtight container for when snack attacks hit.  Middle Eastern grocers have some really great things you can put in.

5 Great Plant Powered Recipes

Mockzarella

http://itdoesnttastelikechicken.com/2015/01/23/melty-stretchy-gooey-vegan-mozarella/

Add a sprinkle of turmeric and/or a bit of mustard for more colour/flavour.  This is great on tacos, toasties as a dip or even as a fondue. Yum.

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Pepperoni

http://minimalistbaker.com/vegan-pepperoni/

Blend in a handful of diced roasted beetroot for colour.

Roll out on bench with greaseproof paper on top and bottom.  Cook uncovered with bottom paper directly on oven racks. Keep the paper you have removed from top and use it to allow you to flip pepperoni halfway through cooking.

Have on toasted sandos with mockzarella.

Simple but pimped Dhal Tadka

No soaking required.

In pot or pressure cooker boil red split lentils, chopped onion and tomato, grated ginger, salt and turmeric to taste, in enough water to make it quite soupy.  Add some kale or broccoli at end of coking if you like for extra colour.

In a separate pan fry up any or all of peppercorns, coriander/cumin/fenugreek/mustard seeds. Add chilli flakes, sesame seeds, curry leaves – all optional.

Serve dhal, top with fried spices and some macadamia or coconut oil and optional coriander leaves.

Vegetable Manchurian – My Chinese-Indian Love Affair

http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/veg-manchurian-veg-manchurian-gravy/

Gobi manchurian is cauliflower fried and served the same way.  Find it in restaurants that serve dosa or that have a Chinese Indian menu, or make it at home, dry or with ‘gravy’ (sauce).  Ask restaurants if they can leave out ajinomoto (MSG) if they use it.

Use a sandwich press to cook the balls, same with felafel.

Vegan Pho inspired soup

http://itdoesnttastelikechicken.com/2014/12/05/quick-vegan-pho/

I could live on clear soups with lots of yummies packed in.

Here is a link to one recipe, if you want to make your life simple you can use five spice powder in place of the dried spices.  I add in a splash of vegetarian oyster or hoisin sauce or weird and wonderful vegetarian pastes from the asian shop.  Have fun with flavours!

ps it’s pronounced ‘feu’ it comes from the French ‘pot au feu

To me soup like this would not be complete without a couple of pieces of mock meat, but some purist vegos would disagree.  Which brings me to my next list…

5 Shamefully Yummy Mock Meats

Mock mutton/beef chunks.  This one is easily yummier than the real dead thing.  It is usually based on shiitake mushroom stems. Eat it fried in fried rice or add to soups like pho, or curries like rendang.  Easily my fave faux.

mock-mutton

BBQ ‘pork’ – great in stir-fries.  Also look out for vegan char siu buns.  Steam or microwave for a total junk food treat. Usually made from wheat protein aka gluten…not for coeliacs!!

Crispy chicken/duck – this crisps up great on the sanga press.  Serve with vegies and rice and sauce of your choice. This is normally made from beancurd, the ‘skin’ off soy milk.

Pretend prawns – Yes they exist! not as tasty as the real thing, but very cute and much more sustainable.  Made from konjac, a starchy root. I love these in soups too.

‘Fish’ – This is similar in use and manufacture to the chicken/duck…it just has some nori seaweed added for ‘sea flavour’. Not for the faint hearted, some can taste a little too ‘gamey’ for comfort.

All of the above can be found at Vincent Vegetarian if you live in Melbourne.  Regular Asian grocers will often stock some of the other items. Meat eaters might sniff at the fakeness of mock meats…but it is any more unnatural than every single step of modern industrial animal farming?!

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https://ffl.org/

FFLG is the world’s largest food relief organisation.

We support plant-based meal distribution to the disadvantaged, malnourished and victims of disaster (natural or manmade), wherever there is a need in the world.

With a mission to address the root cause of all social issues through teaching spiritual equality in practice and precept, our projects also include health education, eco-farming, schooling, animal rescue and animal care.

Background on the Food for Life Project:

The distribution of sanctified plant-based meals has been and will continue to be an essential part of India’s Vedic culture of hospitality from which Food for Life was born. Since its inception in the early 70’s, Food for Life has tried to liberally distribute pure plant-based meals (prasadam) throughout the world with the aim of creating peace and prosperity. The project started in 1974 after yoga students of Swami Prabhupada became inspired by his plea that “No one within a ten-mile radius of a temple should go hungry!” Today Food for Life is active in over 60 countries.

Up to 2,000,000 meals daily!

With volunteers serving up to 2 million free plant-based meals daily to schools, as well as from mobile vans and to disaster areas. FOOD FOR LIFE is now the largest food relief in the world, eclipsing even the United Nations World Food Programme.

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5 Great Yoga Moves

Downward dog

Triangle poseimages

Bridge Pose

Lying single knee twist.

Helping those less fortunate than yourself, whatever their species

 

5 Great Animal Quotes

“Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That’s the problem.” index2
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

“The assumption that animals are without rights and the illusion that our treatment of them has no moral significance is a positively outrageous example of Western crudity and barbarity. Universal compassion is the only guarantee of morality.”
― Arthur Schopenhauer, The Basis of Morality

“I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.”
― Leonardo da Vinci

“Some people say they love animals and yet harm them nonetheless; I’m glad those people don’t love me.”
― Marc Bekoff, The Animal Manifesto: Six Reasons for Expanding Our Compassion Footprint

“Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take with you nothing that have received–only what you have given- a full heart enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage.”
― Francis of Assisi 

And of course this whole blog is a really just a list of 52 great charities 🙂

Week 47 AMRRIC: Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (Australia)

My partner is currently reading a book called The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia.  The thesis of the book is that that Aboriginal people were proactive land managers who had long controlled the land until much of it was as shaped by humans as the English countryside was.

biggest-estate

As I think I understand it, a ‘home among the gum trees’ is only a relatively modern phenomenon in the Australian landscape.  Once there was much thick forest.  Millenia of human habitation and fire-farming practices changed the landscape to meet the needs of the first people.  When white people arrived and helped themselves to the land and trampled over traditional practices, the previously maintained environment turned into the scrubby woodlands, dominated by fire-tolerant species, that we think of as ‘untouched Australia’ today.

Apparently gum trees actually ‘want’ to catch fire as then they can burn out the competition around them.  (Strips of bark peel down like wicks inviting flame into the oily, combustible canopy. The trees can reshoot by coppicing after fire.)  I pity the poor plants, animals and tree changers that get in their way.

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Most Australians know little about our land, and even less about our first people.

Like Tim Flannery and John Doyle pointed out in their series “Two on the Great Divide”, Australia is an incredibly divided nation.  We could all learn so much if we let ourselves.   Yet whether it’s white guilt, fear of rejection, fear of saying something ‘wrong’ or just complacency, sadly it feels easier to sit safely on one side of the divide, shut our eyes, put our hands over our ears and sing ‘Mary Had a Little Lamb’ instead.

The LGBTQIA community has worked hard and positioned itself well to change social norms and gain not only widespread acceptance, but also admiration. Society can change for the good.

Change has to be driven from both sides of the divide.

Let’s start by changing the constitution, changing to a more inclusive flag and changing the nature of Australia Day.

flag

Oh, and let’s stop climbing Uluru. Of course the land was here billions of years before any of us.*  But Aborigines were here tens of thousands of years before the rest of us.

Nobody would enter a traditional Japanese person’s home with their shoes on.

If the traditional owners of Uluru ask us to please not climb Uluru, then surely we should be courteous enough to comply? 

Let’s build bridges, rather than burning them.

http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/good-news/aboriginal-mans-gentle-rebuke-to-two-elderly-women/news-story/29d6902afef3662b73999015fb2df2fb

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I like the sound of this organisation.

amrric

http://www.amrric.org

About AMRRIC

Indigenous kids holding a camp dog

AMRRIC (Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities) is a not-for-profit charity that uses a One Health approach to coordinate veterinary and education programs in Indigenous communities.

Our One Health approach recognises the inextricable links between human, animal and environmental health and wellbeing. By working with remote Indigenous communities to improve the health of their pets, we are helping to create healthier, safer and happier communities.

In the last financial year, AMRRIC has facilitated veterinary programs in 92 different remote communities and homelands.

Our work:

By improving the health and welfare of companion animals in a community, AMRRIC’s animal health programs contribute to an improvement in human health

Our work:

  • assists with the control of dog populations through veterinarian-led desexing programs (addressing problems of noise, scavenging and attacks on humans)
  • empowers Aboriginal communities by providing the knowledge, training and resources that enable them to take responsibility for their animals’ health and welfare
  • delivers education programs to school students, community members, environmental health practitioners, animal management workers and government and non-government organisations about all aspects of animal health and welfare in remote Indigenous communities
  • educates Indigenous communities specifically about parasites and diseases in companion animals, leading to a reduction in the transmission of disease from animals to people (zoonoses)
  • partners with government at all levels to develop animal health and welfare policy relevant to remote Indigenous communities
  • contributes to research programs across Australia and internationally, with the Cancer Genome Project in Cambridge, UK, and its work on Canine Transmissible Venereal Tumour, a common disease in dogs in remote Australian communities.

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* If for some reason cultural respect isn’t convincing enough, how about this:

…the path left by rubber from the soles of climbers’ shoes is visible from kilometres away and some tourists leave litter and damage the rock. Moreover, extreme heat and a lack of toilet facilities mean that large amounts of evaporated, concentrated human urine flow into the area’s waterholes whenever it rains.

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/offtrack/climbing-the-rock:-why-do-tourists-still-climb-uluru/6603640

 

Update: I just woke up to find a report on a really good essay by Stan Grant 🙂

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-11-19/stan-grant-on-‘the-australian-dream’/8038826

Week 46 LAPA Helping Animals in Russia

             Even though the election was rigged, as the great man himself declared,                          America has spoken.

trump-dog

But what about those who can’t speak?

The United Arab Emirates recently introduced animal welfare laws.

camel
“Does this mean we get to ride on tourists’ backs in the searing heat instead?”

Dubai: A proposed UAE national animal welfare law to protect animals on farms, in zoos and in the wild, possibly as early as by the end of the year, is earning high praise from one of the top international animal welfare organisations, International Fund for Animal Welfare(IFAW)

It’s hard to believe that they didn’t exist already.

Russia, home to Trump’s bestie, is a country that has no animal welfare laws at all.

trump-putin-horse
“I’ll love you forever if you make life better for all animals (except that f*ing bald eagle).”

The animal welfare situation in Russia is at a critical level and needs to change.

There is no animal welfare legislation in Russia.  As a result, there is no culture of sterilising, vaccinating or de-worming pets and breeding is not regulated. This causes overpopulation and diseases. Sadly, tens of thousands of cats and dogs are abandoned every year.  The ones that survive breed, others die of hunger, illness, cruelty and severe weather conditions.

If you watch this wonderful presentation by Lyn White, it is clear that many people care about animals, they just often don’t know where to begin.

Enshrining animal rights in law would be a good place to start.

Come on Mr Putin, you can do anything!

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Fortunately there are people out there for whom empathy already speaks louder than apathy .

http://www.lapauk.org/en/

WHAT WE DO

Our work has two areas of focus:

SAFE STERILISATION OF ANIMALS

We arrange and finance the sterilisation of stray cats and dogs and animals who live in shelters.  We also subsidise the cost of sterilisation of pets owned by the disadvantaged, pensioners, disabled people and students. Find out more about Project Sterilisation…

CHILDREN’S EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMME

We conduct lessons at Russian schools to pupils aged between 6 and 15, where we discuss issues of care and wellbeing of animals, teach children how to look after pets and what happens to them if they are abandoned.  The lessons are conducted both in Russian and the English language. Find out more about our Educational Programme…

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Mr Trump has described the Paris [climate] Agreement as “unbelievable”, promising to remove the US from its signatories, and also bizarrely claimed global warming is a hoax perpetrated by China. 

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/donald-trump-election-us-global-warming-climate-change-fossil-fuels-petrol-oil-a7402276.html

 

Dog help all us dumb animals.

 

uncle-sam
Uncle Sam showing how he feels.

 

Week 45 A Well-Fed World (USA/International)

I am learning about some great initiatives out there as I follow the great bread-crumb also known as the internet.

Today I got an email about this debate, held on Monday 31 October 2016 by Intelligence Squared in London’s Royal Institute.

LET THEM EAT MEAT: THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH REARING AND KILLING ANIMALS FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION

Speaker for the motion

AA Gill

The Sunday Times’s star restaurant and TV critic. He has also worked as an artist and a chef. In October 2009, Gill sparked controversy by reporting in his Sunday Times column that he had shot a baboon dead to ‘get a sense of what it might be like to kill someone’. He says he will eat anything that doesn’t have a birth certificate.

Speaker against the motion

George Monbiot

Writer best known for his environmental and political activism. He writes regularly for The Guardian and his most recent book is Feral: Searching for Enchantment on the Frontiers of Rewilding. Having wavered for years between eating and not eating meat, he now claims to be 97% vegan (he eats roadkill and the odd egg or bit of fish).

 

Apparently ‘against’ won :-).  Nice one, George!

Looking up George Monbiot led me to the website of the Jewish Vegetarian Society

jewish-vegetarian-society

JVS is an international charity, dedicated to promoting a kinder society, without killing animals for food, where mankind is not cruel to fellow beings, both human and animal, as expressed in the Torah.

We advocate a vegetarian world which protects the environment, promotes human health and conserves natural resources. All of our events are 100% vegan.

JVS in turn led me to Planeat

planeat
Nothing changes the planet as much as the way we eat.

PLANEAT is the story of three men’s life-long search for a diet, which is good for our health, good for the environment and good for the future of the planet. With an additional cast of pioneering chefs and some of the best cooking you have ever seen, the scientists and doctors in the film present a convincing case for the West to re-examine its love affair with meat and dairy.

 

…whose website provided a link to A Well-Fed World which immediately became this week’s feature, and an instant favourite of mine…I love multi-tasking!

awfw

What We Do

A Well-Fed World is a hunger relief and animal protection organisation chipping away at two of the world’s most immense, unnecessary and unconscionable forms of suffering… the suffering of people hungry from lack of food, and the suffering of animals used and abused for food.

We have a positive, practical, and action-led approach that produces immediate assistance for those in need and structural change for lasting results.

In addition to our direct programs, we raise funds, partner with, and promote innovative, highly effective projects that strengthen:

  • plant-based feeding & farming programs
  • farm animal care & rescue efforts
  • vegan advocacy & community building

Thanks in part to our donated office space and internet, our combined overhead and fundraising costs are less than 5%.

The result is that more of your donation goes directly to programs. In particular cases, 100% of funds are sent directly to the projects in need.

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Along the way I found out that world number 1 tennis player Novac Djokovic recently opened a vegan restaurant called Eqvita in Monte Carlo 🙂

To all this, I say, LOVE!

Novak

 

Week 44 Brightside Farm Sanctuary (Australia)

 

pig suit.jpg
Mmm..looks delicious.  We should honour its life by eating every part from nose to tail!

I have watched the first two episodes of For the Love of Meat on SBS.

I have certainly learnt a lot from the first two episodes on chickens/pigs.

 

 

Brightside Farm Sanctuary was featured in the second episode.  I know all animals are much smarter than we give them credit for, but I wasn’t entirely convinced by an experiment in the show that a pig was using its keen intelligence rather than its keen sense of smell!

Speaking of sense of smell, we humans always devise tests by our standards.  Imagine how hopelessly we would perform in tests created to animals’ standards.  A dog knows exactly  what its humans have been up to, while we can be totally oblivious to an affair that is going on, literally under our noses.  Smell is the only sense that tells the story of the past and present.  Imagine how different our society would be if we had an even half decent sense of smell?

Flight? We covet it so much we created fancy machines to indulge us with it.  Then we put creatures that nature designed to fly in tiny cages.

Lucky there are some good ones amongst us…like Emma Haswell, founder of Brighstside in Tasmania’s Huon Valley.

brightside2

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brightside

Brightside Farm Sanctuary

Brightside Farm Sanctuary offers a permanent home to over 250 farm animals and companion animals. We rescue and rehome 300 to 500 animals each year, placing them in approved loving homes.

Many of the animals Brightside gives help to have been rescued from appalling cruelty, while others were no longer able to stay in their previous homes due to unforseen circumstances.

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Turkeys are completely underestimated.  They are wonderful individuals.  I am really happy to see that Owen is being given a chance to speak up for his brothers and sisters.

There is plenty of more great information to be found on the Brightside site.

Featured animal: Owen

owen

Owen was rescued from a factory farm when he was about 5 weeks old. We were shocked to find he and his friends were missing the ends of their toes as they had been cut off as had the tips of his beaks. This is standard practice in the turkey farming industry. No sedation or pain relief is given to these poor little baby birds. Thankfully he and his friends can still walk and perch. Owen’s favourite food is watermelon which he absolutely loves.

The voice calling for an end to cruelty must never waver, it must never get disheartened, it must keep revealing the truth, because in the end, when good people unite they can end even the most terrible injustice.WILLIAM WILBERFORCE.