Building Community

2013-02-04 21.43.48

Going vegan all by yourself is difficult. Having people around you to encourage and cheer you on is so much better. You can share stories, recipes, challenges and victories. But, not everyone has vegan friends ready to help in their journey during those first steps. Luckily, the internet is ready to help you find new vegan friends.

Check out and see if there is a vegan group already in your town. Many vegetarian groups are very vegan friendly. If there is nothing in your town, consider starting one.

Check out the Forks Over Knives webpage and see if there is something happening in your town.

Pick up a copy of Veg News, or better yet, subscribe. Every issue is full of great information to help you on your vegan journey, including upcoming events across the country. I am completely dedicated to this publication and even made sure to stop by their San Francisco office last fall when visiting the city.

Go to Happy Cow or download their great mobile app and find all the vegan, or at least vegan friendly, restaurants in or near your town. Go eat there and start conversations with the waitstaff and/or owners. These people have lots of information and may know of others you can meet, or cooking classes you can go to and meet more people.

Once you know a few people that you like, start a vegan themed potluck. I had wanted to do this for years, but was only recently able to finally make it happen. Every time we have a potluck, it has a different theme to encourage us to always explore. Themes can be anything, like a food item such as kale, or an ethnic food like Indian. Mostly we are all encouraging each other on our journey.

Talk to people at your local health food store. Many offer cooking classes, or know where some are happening. Even big chains, like Whole Foods, will sometimes have vegan cooking classes.

If you happen to already know someone who is vegan, seek them out and ask to have lunch soon. Several people at my church did this with me and it inspired my frist six-week course on healthy eating. That class continues to inspire me and each other.

After a little work, you should have a community of people to help you.


  1. I have taken classes sponsored by Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. They offer classes focused on disease reversal like diabetes and the classes are always vegan. I also took several classes at what was once a local vegan restaurant (I moved) that I loved.

    Every class I have taken has offered some insight or inspiration. Certainly some are better than others, but there is always something helpful. Many times the instructor will have a profile available to read ahead of time to help potential attendees decide if they want to join.

    Now I teach classes locally and love it! I’m working on making some instructional videos, so please stay tuned.

    Thanks for reading!

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