Letter From New Zealand

We hear from vegans on the other side of the world…

I just saw your website – great stuff. I just wanted to email and
touch base, as we are setting up a similar initiative across the other
side of the world in New Zealand. We call ourselves Team Vegan.

We are actually just in the process of forming and working on our
website which should be up in the next week or so. It is neat to have
found another similar group, we will definitely add a link to you from
our website!

Our initiative emerged a couple of weeks ago when my husband asked if
I wanted to run Round the Bays – which is a huge fun run held along
Auckland’s waterfront – over 70,000 people take part in the 8.4 km run
each year. My husbands work was entering a team and I thought – why
don’t the two of us see if any vegan friends are keen and enter a Team
Vegan for the run (as you only need 4 people to register a team). We
thought it would be a great chance to have fun, get some exercise in
and increase visibility of the vegan community here – in a really
positive way that breaks the vegan stereotypes (apparently we are all
supposed to be falling over with no energy?).

Over the last week Team Vegan has grown and we now have close to 30
runners registered on the team and in the Round the Bays run. We are
still over a month out from the run which is on 16 March, and our
numbers continue to grow daily as word gets around the networks here.
Our national animal rights organisation SAFE has even agreed to
sponsor an end of run vegan BBQ for Team Vegan runners covering the
costs of hiring an official Round the Bays BBQ site with all the other
corporate and social teams participating. So we are finding the
initiative to have a great level of support here!

Because so many of those signing up with us for this specific run
wanted Team Vegan to be an ongoing thing, we have decided, like Vegan
Runners, to form a permanent sports club, and are in the process
getting club uniforms made up! We have even had two people decide to
go vegan and join us, so it has provided a great reason to inspire
people already close to the edge to make the change. Finding your
website and seeing what you guys are doing over in the UK is very
inspiring to us as a new group just starting out, we only hope to
become as permanent and professional as your club obviously is!

We are all very excited about the potential of the new club, and look
forward to our first event when we will all get to stand on the start
line with at least 30 other Team Vegan members all in club uniform!

Until now the only vegan sporting event here has been the annual Vegan
, which is now in its fourth year and has also been going from strength to strength with more and more
participants entering each year. I don’t know of any vegetarian
sporting groups here so it seems it’s vegans that are paving the way
in NZ 🙂

I really just wanted to say hi from us all in New Zealand and share
the news with other like minded people in the UK!

All the best

Deidre Bourke
Team Vegan