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12th IVU World Vegetarian Congress 1950

Oosterbeck, Netherlands

From The Vegetarian News (London) Spring 1950:

International Vegetarian Union
at Oosterbeek, Holland, 11th - 17th July 1950

IN Holland during the war, only members of the Vegetarian Society in that country, the Nederlandsche Vegetariërsbond, could obtain the official vegetarian ration, and the organisation therefore grew to more than 6,000 members and was at that time the largest vegetarian society in Europe, if not in the world. It is therefore fitting that the second post-war Congress of the International Vegetarian Union, which is held every third year, should take place in the Netherlands, and our Dutch friends are evidently determined to make the most of the opportunity.

Accommodation at De Pietersberg, the pleasant country-house and conference centre at Oosterbeek, near Arnhem, in woods flanking the Rhine. a limited to about 120 delegates. The London Vegetarian Society's delegati~ is expected to include the Executive Chairman, Mrs. D. K. Horsfield, Mrs. E. B. Shrigley arid Miss Mabel Simmons of the Executive, and the Society's Secretary, Mr. Roy Walker.

But there is also an excellent scheme for Youth Exchange for people between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five, who can be accommodated n a youth hostel in the vicinity.

Organiser Henk Volkers, of 10 St. Aldegonde Street, Delft, writes to extend the closing date for applications from January 3 1st, which was because of the time needed to arrange all exchange details, travelling, currency etc. "A final date of April 15th can be assumed," says Mr. Volkers, "as I think it very important that many young English vegetarians are able to come to Holland. It is emphasized, however, that subscription should take place as soon as possible." He puts the approximate expenses for stay at hostel during the Congress, and living costs during subsequent short bycicle tours, at no more than five shillings a day in English money, and reports that although excursions will have to be paid for by all participants, the youth visitors will be invited to attend all open sessions and Lectures at the Congress without charge. This is a splendid scheme, on which the Dutch are to be warmly congratulated. We hope it will be used to the full, and as to travelling elsewhere in Holland, we are glad to report the only slightly ambiguous assurance from our old friend Johan Bolt that "every hotel and restaurant of standing will do for vegetarians" more or less satisfactorily.

Since the 1947 Congress at Stonehouse, England, decided to set up an International Committee and Executive, the movement has been greatly strengthened by the emergence of an American Vegetarian Union last August and a Canadian Vegetarian Union which came into existence in January this year. We hope to see delegates from both these new members of the International Vegetarian Union at Oosterbeek, and also look forward to the day when the Europeans and Americans will be joined by representatives from Asia, Africa and Australasia. Meanwhile, the time has come to decide what is possible in the way of a nucleus of a permanent staff and office for the International, whose very existence depends on the extent of the willingness of national societies to make substantial contributions to work outside their own immodiate frontiers. Is the internatlonal spitit among us string enough to do better than the politicians in the federal field? Oosterbeck will supply the answer.

During the last five days of August the Animal Welfare movement will face similar questions in an important international conference to be held at Hotel Kurhaus, Scheveningen, The Hague. The Conference is already supported by more than thirty societies representing India, Africa and America, as well as England and most European countries. The President is Dr. Mr. W. Hugenholtz, Prinses Mariestraat 40, The Hague, Holland.