VWPA Advice 032: Do I Support a Non-Vegan Organization that Does Good Work?
I’d love some general input and advice about partnering with vegan-friendly but not vegan exclusive organizations!
When I was down on my luck, a local organization helped me a lot by helping me to buy farm fresh produce at a time where I couldn’t afford it. Now that I’m in a better place, I want to give back to this program who got me through some dark and tough times so I’ve reached out to them to see if I can use my online presence and available time to help them.
The problem is that this program doesn’t restrict what the aid can be used for, so people benefiting from the program can conceivably use the help to buy animal products. I’m going to make it clear that nothing with my name or face attached can be used to promote or recommend animal products, but I still feel weird about it. Is it ok to help a non-vegan organization that has done so much good in my life, just because they’re not vegan?
The important thing to remember, for all of us, and, I’m sure you remember this clearly, is that when you’re poor everyone tries to make decisions for you. It’s infuriating. You feel like a teenager with an allowance that your parents monitor. I’ve heard this is the #1 reason homeless choose not to go to shelters – they can’t stand all the rules. When you lose autonomy over your life, little things like curfews or rules about what you can have with you become unbearable. This all to say, I love your approach and I don’t think you should be ashamed or worried about helping to gently spread vegan education to a group of people who likely aren’t getting it anywhere else without mandating that they are eating vegan. It’s important for these people to make their own choices, even if they are choices we don’t like. Hopefully, after trying a bunch of vegan recipes and being exposed to you, they’ll start to get curious and get there on their own. Vegan police be damned!
I’m glad this program was available to you during your down times; I think it’s admirable and lovely that you are giving back to them, in a way that fits your morals!
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