It took me a little while to go vegan. I was a vegetarian for about seven years, and a very conscious carnivore for a few years after that. I’d always had something inside telling me that I need to make the full leap to veganism, but I didn’t really listen. Then, after reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals last year, the idea made more sense to me. So I kept reading books about factory farming and did a lot of research (as I’ve documented in older posts) and in July finally decided it was time. I haven’t eaten any animal-based products since.
One of the things I’ve read about over and over again are rescue farms like like the Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY, where animals saved from slaughter are brought and given much longer, much more deserving lives. Sanctuaries like this exist all around the country, in California, Illinois, and Washington, among other states. What I never knew before I walked into my favorite vegan restaurant here in Montclair, Veggie Heaven, a few weeks back and saw a business card in the doorway is that one of these rescue farms exists in New Jersey.
The For the Animals sanctuary is in the northwestern part of the state in Blairstown, and they’re a farm dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of animals that would’ve otherwise fallen victim to the terrible and merciless conditions of the factory farming industry. They offer both visitor and work days, so if you’re not too far away and would like to go see the great work that the do, you can get in touch and set up a time to stop by. And, like most nonprofits, they can always use some more funding to keep their terrific work going. You can donate or look over their wishlist on their website and pitch in that way, too.
Another way to help For the Animals is to participate in their annual bake sale at MooShoes in New York City on May 1st. Whether it’s buying something yummy or volunteering to bake or help out at the table, you can surely make a difference and help this wonderful facility to keep doing its amazing work.
And if you’re not in the northeast, take a little time to do some research and find a similar animal sanctuary near you. Whether you’re a herbivore or a carnivore, these places can always use a helping hand while they continue to save the lives of some pretty great animals.