Be-A-Veg with Bay Area Vegetarians!
Who we are
Bay Area Vegetarians is a San Francisco Bay Area wide organization for vegans, vegetarians, veg*n-inclined and interested people to find community & support for vegetarianism with like-minded folks. Our goal is to support and encourage the local veg*n and animal rights community through our events, activities, resources, as well as our online bulletin board and mailing lists.
We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. In the community spirit, all of our events and activities are organized by volunteers. We have no paid staff. Membership is free, volunteers and donations are most gratefully appreciated.
We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, age, national origin, language, sex, sexual preference, or physical handicap.
Why we are
The San Francisco Bay Area is a large region, with millions of people. Vegetarians and vegans are a very small percentage of that population. We saw a need for an organized community where everyone (vegans, pre-vegans, vegetarians, vegetarian-interested folks), could share local news, ask questions, or otherwise find the camaraderie or support for their veg*n lifestyle. People evolve to a veg*n lifestyle for many reasons (ethical, environmental, health, spiritual, etc.). Despite our perhaps different motivations for embracing a veg*n lifestyle, we all share a dietary preference.
What we do
Our organizational model revolves around CARE: Community - Advocacy - Resources - Education
Community is one of the hallmarks of Bay Area Vegetarians. We offer free membership so everyone can afford to join, welcoming the veg curious as well as new and aspiring vegetarians to staunch vegan activists.
Our monthly events include restaurant dinners throughout the Bay Area (SF, Palo Alto, San Jose, Oakland, Marin), food & fun-filled Vegan Food Parties (aka potlucks), letter writing parties and cruelty protests, camping trips, speakers, films, etc.
We also provide 5 different email lists to connect & support the local community. Prior to BAVeg, the largest local mailing list for vegetarianism was circa 250 subscribers. We surpassed that number in our first year, and have been growing steadily ever since.
BAVeg is driven from the bottom up, meaning that its entirely membership driven -- our volunteers (you!) decide what events happen.
In addition to our social events, we also offer ample advocacy opportunities, from monthly activities like letter writing parties, animal cruelty protests, and college leafleting to tabling outreach.
To reward our advocates, we offer an Advocacy Rewards Program. For each advocacy event, participants earn points and chances to win vegan prizes.
Bay Area Vegetarians strives to be a valued resource to the community by providing:
- Veg/AR Event Calendar
- Ultimate Guide to Vegetarian Living in the San Francisco Bay Area
- Veg Food Finder
- Veggie Mentor Program
- Advocacy Rewards Program
- Educational tabling exhibits on vegetarianism & factory farming
- Largest local email list for discussions and events
- Articles & Literature
We also partner with other local and national groups for special events, like Tribe of Heart's Northern California Premiere for Peaceable Kingdom, PETA's Helping Animals 101 conference in SF, and Cinema Libre's SF release of McLibel.
- Compassionate Living Program
- Book Reviews
- Documentary Movie screenings
- Educational exhibits
- Veggie Mentor Program
Where'd we come from
In October, 2001, we officially started a mailing list on Yahoo Groups ("SFBAVEG") for the bay area veg*n community. We did not have the intention to start a new group, but merely to provide a vehicle for the broader veg*n and animal rights community to network and support each other.
Our mailing list has, however, with the support of many others, evolved into a group which hosts its own separate events and established its own unique culture. Our members live throughout the Bay Area with a sprinkling of out-of-state and international members. Our membership fee is very affordable -- it's free! And we typically have 10-12 social and advocacy events every month.
We hope BAVeg continues to grow and find new members. We know many of our new members were referrals from existing members, and that's the best advertisement of all.
So, stand up and be counted! Since membership is free, all group communication happens through one of our mailing lists. We've got quite a few so pick the one that best suits you. Seeing a large membership number encourages others to join us, and makes us realize that others share our commitment to a veg*n lifestyle. Join us today -- make our voice for vegetarianism stronger!
But for us, it's not only about how many members BAVeg has or how often the members post to the mailing list. It's about growing our veg*n community. Making it easier to live a vegetarian lifestyle. Finding support and camaraderie for our chosen lifestyle.... Not having to be the only veg*n at the 4th of July BBQ. Not having to ask for the umpteenth time "Is that veg*n?" Being able to find out where to buy a vegan chocolate cake. Being able to find out how to make one. Finding new friends who share your same reasons for being a veg*n.
Please be an active part of our community -- support your local vegetarian group by sharing information, asking/answering questions, hosting an event, coordinating outreach activities, etcetera! BAVeg depends on all of us to grow and flourish! Please note - we do have guidelines for posting to the SFBAVEG mailing list. We ask that you familiarize yourself with them, and respect them.
If you would like to be more involved with Bay Area Vegetarians and our advocacy efforts, please subscribe to our volunteer list, TEAM-BAVeg, when you join.
We will each get out of this organization and community what we put into it: communication, creativity, compassion, and, our personal hope, community. We're looking forward to meeting you!
Tammy & Chris
Bay Area Vegetarians co-Founders