Going vegan can seem like a daunting change to make. A really simple way to approach the shift is doing a little at a time – start with Veganuary, committing to at least a month of veganism this New Year! Signing up gets you loads of advice, tips and support and you can join the wonderfully kind facebook group to ask questions. Then, day by day, take one choice at a time, looking up information as and when needed. Blogs and websites and books can provide you with endless help on the practicalities of your new, kind lifestyle.
However, there is one type of support that can help you way beyond tips and advice. Finding your local vegan or veggie group can make you feel part of a community of compassionate people and, most importantly, stops you feeling like the only person around who cares about what is happening to our planet and the animals. Online support is great, but there is nothing like knowing that people living local to you feel the same. The sense of community can be highly comforting. Quite often the wealth of local knowledge also means you can get tailor made advice and info!
You may find new friends who you can join for meet ups, team up with to convince local businesses to cater for vegan customers and even get involved in local activism! Meeting up to eat is the best of course! For example your local group might be a source of support if you need to bank some positivity for dealing with your meaty family Christmas dinner. Waltham Forest Vegans recently used our local veggie cafe The Hornbeam Cafe to put on the most gorgeous festive celebration, with delicious desert by local baker Tegan the Vegan, who I also met through the group. These kind of meet ups are invaluable for chatting and become inspired by the beautiful variety of vegan personalities, with everyone having their own way of living their life, albeit with the same core values as yourself.
If you haven’t got a local group, how about setting one up yourself?! Of course this doesn’t mean sacking off all your non-vegan life long friends. In fact you will likely find that a kind and positive attitude toward your non-vegan friends will set them an example of how lovely a lifestyle it can be! Over time they may join you! But, despite stereotypical expectations, you can’t tell a vegan by how they look, so there may be a whole bunch of lovely vegan folk lurking in your town just waiting to be discovered!