DIY Vegan Conference

DIY Vegan:  A vegan conference FOR the community, BY the community

DIY is short-hand for “do it yourself”, and that speaks to the essential spirit we’d like to capture for this conference.  What would you like to say or hear at a grassroots vegan conference?

With the DIY Vegan conference model, anyone will be able to submit a topic proposal — the only requirement will be that it involves some aspect of veganism, which could include animal rights, philosophy, environmental, social justice, religion, edible, ethics, advocacy strategies, “how to” type topics (raise vegan children, bake vegan, leaflet, etc).  The proposals received will then drive the content of the conference.

At this point in time, this is just an “idea”.   Do we have enough support and/or interest in the community for an event like this?  Support would be needed from both speakers and volunteers in  administrative areas,  i.e. marketing, organizing, logistics, administrative help, etc.

Event: DIY Vegan Conference
Date:  Early Feb 2009 (weekend)
Location:  Oakland, CA (Lake Merritt area)

And, there is always the possibility that if this event is success, it could happen again in different parts of the Bay Area.

Your early feedback will be our gauge whether there’s enough interest and support within the community to proceed with this event.

Please reply via email or leave us a blog comment and indicate whether you would submit a proposal, volunteer at the event, attend the event, or, have no interest at all in the event.  Please ask your interested friends to do the same.


  1. possible speaker/topic: Froogle Foodies / organized cooking classes:

    Moses started organizing cooking classes for vegetarian (sometimes vegan) food, and it’s a great, gentle way to introduce people to better veg*n cooking, a good mix of social, activism and food.

  2. Rachel Donovan says:

    GREAT IDEA, Tammy! After being thoroughly disillusioned by the “heritage pork” and “organic goat cheese” etc being touted at Slow Food Nation, I feel the need for this DIY Vegan conference more than ever.

    Are you envisioning a big event open to the general public like Slow Food was, or are you imagining workshops that would be attended only by vegans and aspiring vegans?

    It would be cool if we could have some kind of all vegan marketplace with guest speakers. I guess it might be something like World Vegetarian Day but all vegan?

  3. Desiree says:

    I’ll be there! I could volunteer to help out with logistics (so long as it wouldn’t require many meetings beforehand, as I work and go to school full time in Santa Cruz), but presenting something is a little too much for me. I’m forwarding to my vegans though! =)

  4. I think the most profound aspect of veganism is rarely mentioned, that it is our natural diet and the only diet that is supported by nature.

    Humans are herbivores. There is simply no aspect of social dysfunction that cannot be traced to our disassociation from nature and its laws of interaction, inclusion, etc. This principle also underpins (determines) most causes of personal (and interpersonal) psychological and physical disorientation, alienation/estrangement, loss of vitality, etc.

    The inability to correctly position ourselves, physically, interactively and emotionally/intellectually in the world at large has profoundly disturbing and destructive consequences for ourselves and for our world.

    To blind ourselves to the fact that we are an integral facet of the greater biosphere has forced us to turn everywhere but where we must for essential nourishment, emotionally and physically. Nothing will end the cult of domination, violence and deception that has engulfed the minds of men and the world he impacts until a proper respect for the laws of nature becomes defining in all affairs of humankind.

    This topic is at once simple to grasp and necessarily complex in its ability to point every conceivable direction to healing, medically, socially, environmentally, etc.

    “The human species is driving itself full speed into an evolutionary dead-end. We are destroying the planet and everything we do kills animals. We have lost our moral compass. We think in terms of profit and power rather than ethics and compassion. We no longer have any reverence for life or any sense of connection with the natural world. We see ourselves as conquerors of nature rather than citizens of a vast biocommunity. We are technologically sophisticated and morally retarded. We have no conception of the importance of non-human life forms in sustaining ecosystems. We fail to realise that what we do to animals, we do to ourselves. And all the while, we live in a fantasy land of entertainment and distractions whereby we focus more on the sex lives and surgical makeovers of movie stars than the greatest challenge our species has ever faced. I believe that animal liberation is the next great liberation movement on this planet, and that by promoting respect for non-human animals, we are advancing human moral evolution.”

    Steve Best

  5. Robin says:

    I would definitely attend, but I could also either volunteer or submit a proposal, depending on what is needed most.

  6. Mary Vincent says:

    I will attend.

    I suggest the following:
    – a tasting event with wine options (similar to golden glass but only vegan). Proprietors will serve their items. I suggest that restaurants that ‘include’ vegan items be invited. (I could help volunteer to make this happen)
    – entertainment that would be enjoyed by most people
    – a silent auction to benefit Farm Sanctuary or another top-voted cause
    – a session for non-vegetarians on the vegetarian basics which can include samples

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