|International Vegetarian Union (IVU)|
Alex Bourke, from England, is a leading international vegan activist, writer and publisher, with sales of over 60,000 of his books.
Alex became vegetarian at the age of 14 in 1975 but didn't meet another veggie until 1980 at university, where together they started a society. Throughout the eighties and early nineties he worked as a software engineer, including three years at a travel publisher. In 1989 he became a vegan. Increasingly dissatisfied with selling his brain for money, he started to publish vegetarian guidebooks in his free time. In 1994-5 he took a year out to work as a volunteer at Viva! (www.viva.org.uk) where he learned campaigning and media skills. In 1998 he became a full time writer and campaigner and started his own company Vegetarian Guides (www.veggieguides.co.uk) In 2001 he scripted and co-produced the 22 minute introductory film Animal Rights, which shows the British movement, explains the psychology of change, and proposes easy ways to get active.
Alex has worked with activists and groups in Britain, France, Belgium, Poland and America to identify the challenges and blocks that all activists encounter. He has a special interest in using the techniques of transpersonal psychology and neuro-linguistic programming to achieve progress and success in ourselves, our groups and our countries.
Alex is a local contact for the Vegan Society and has given advice to hundreds of individuals, school talks, and appeared many times on tv and radio to explain how easy it is to be vegan, what we eat, how to find more vegans, and what to say to people who want to give us a hard time. He is co-author of Vegetarian London, Vegetarian Britain, Vegetarian Europe, Vegetarian France and Campaign Against Cruelty - an activist's handbook. His publishing workshops on four continents have resulted in guides to Amsterdam, Berlin, Edinburgh, Melbourne, Munich and New York. In 2004 he became Chair of the Vegan Society.
Alex will be presenting the following talks/workshops:
1. TALK: THE WAY OF THE VEGAN (minimum 20 minutes) - title of forthcoming book.
Alex Bourke is one of the world's leading vegan activists, Vice-Chair of the Vegan Society, producer of the film Animal Rights, and publisher of the book Campaign Against Cruelty - an activist's handbook.
All the benefits of the vegetarian diet, both for people and animals, come from its vegan component. Vegan products are now in every shop, and veganism and the Vegan Society are frequently in the UK media. How did we get here, and what is the way ahead? What does it mean to be vegan, what do we tell our friends and family, and how do we change the world? How do we build a movement, deal with internal power struggles, and motivate people to give a big part of their lives to our work and have a great time doing it?
He will use overheads/slides in English and Portuguese, together with music, film and dramatic techniques to create a more exciting presentation.
2. WORKSHOP: PUBLISH A VEGETARIAN BOOK (30-60 minutes)
Alex Bourke worked for a travel publisher in the eighties before setting up his own company Vegetarian Guides. Over 60,000 copies of his books have been sold worldwide. He has published guides to London, Britain, France and Europe and led workshops that resulted in guides to Amsterdam, Berlin, Edinburgh, Melbourne, Munich and New York. When there are vegetarian guides to every city and country, it will be very easy for anyone anywhere to be a vegetarian. Alex will explain how to easily create and market a guide for your town.
3. FILM: ANIMAL RIGHTS (22 minutes)
The UK animal rights movement leads the world. This inspiring documentary style film, in English with Portuguese subtitles, shows British activists in action and will leave you determined to get out there and change the world.
4. WORKSHOP: VEGANISM FOR BEGINNERS
Many vegetarians would like to be vegan but are worried that it's difficult. Nothing could be further from the truth! Alex is a local contact for the Vegan Society and has given advice to hundreds of individuals, school talks, and appeared many times on tv and radio to explain just how easy it is to be vegan, what we eat, how to find more vegans, and what to say to people who want to give us a hard time.
5. DISCUSSION GROUP: LEADERSHIP FOR VEGANS
There are lots of problems to solve when you run a group, whether local or national. Leaders of successful groups around the world come together for a discussion with people starting new groups and those who are discovering "blocks" to their progress.