Louise and her group used electronic surveys rather than paper for the first time at this event, and she found them beneficial in reducing the time required to tabulate the data. They’re also more environmentally friendly, and she didn’t need to chase down missing pens. She noted that conducting a survey is a type of activism in itself because the questions prompt the attendees to reflect on their experience.
In the future, she hopes to achieve a higher survey response rate by making more announcements about the survey and displaying the QR code on the screen more frequently because people come and go throughout the day. She also plans to print more and larger signs in brighter colors to display the QR code more prominently around the venue.
Louise became vegan in 2011 at age 23 after being vegetarian for 10 years, and she launched her prolific activism career the same year. In just the past 4 years, she’s received 23 VegFund grants for vegan advocacy events. These activities include vegan food sampling held in strategic locations such as a nutrition college, a local pet store holding a dog-adoption event, and a workshop at a “holistic” conference. Louise’s events over the past four years have directly reached approximately 5,937 people who enjoyed 6,663 vegan food samples!
Louise received a grant from VegFund in 2021 that helped SVB install three billboards in high-traffic areas of Passo Fundo. Approximately 42,000 passersby were exposed to the campaign message, “If you love one, why eat the other?”
In 2022, accompanied by three volunteers, she spoke to 350 children and their teachers at two public elementary schools by invitation from vegan teacher Marcelle Toscani (who has recently joined the group as a new volunteer). To be acceptable to the schools, Louise focused her talk on pet dogs and cats, and she also used the opportunity to talk about the personalities and intelligence of farmed animals and what we can do to respect them. The students sampled vegan chocolate cake baked by school employees using the teacher’s recipe and low-cost ingredients. The feedback from the schools and the children’s reactions were very positive. Louise encourages other vegan advocates to speak to children at schools. She believes this was one of her most successful events ever.
Louise and her dog Lótus, letting a student experience how veterinarians help keep pets healthy.
Louise has learned a lot from helping to organize six editions of the Film Festival for the Animals in Curitiba and Rio de Janeiro in past years and this year in Passo Fundo. She stresses the importance of advertising the event to non-vegan animal lovers, for example, by displaying posters in pet shops and vet clinics and not branding it as a “vegan event” — and, course, offering free food to attract people to the festival. She sees their partnership with City Hall as important in legitimizing the event to the public and obtaining radio advertising.