International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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23rd IVU World Vegetarian Congress 1975
Orono, Maine, USA

from Vegetarian Voice Sept/Oct, Nov/Dec 1975:

Editorial -
A Team Effort

NAVS was created two years ago for two main reasons:

1) The short term project: To plan, organize, publicize, and act as host organization for, the World Vegetarian Congress of 1975, and:

2) The long-range effort: To bring about a complete renaissance of the vegetarian movement in the U.S.A. and Canada. This included affiliation of the few existing local groups, helping and encouraging individuals to start new local groups, publishing a vegetarian magazine, books,and other informative literature; also serving as an information center for good, reliable vegetarian information; planning and organizing North American Vegetarian Congresses, etc., etc.

Tremendous progress has been made in this 2-year period, with the two aspects of NAVS activity proceeding simultaneously, each helping the other.

We are one Congress older, and so much the wiser. The experience gained will serve us well in future Congresses. We are aware that we can learn not only from our successes but also our mistakes. While this pictorial souvenir has dwelt on the former, it should not be taken to mean that we are blind to the latter.


On the contrary, we are confident that the 1976 North American Vegetarian Congress will embody much of what we have learned from this first effort. It is intended to be much more streamlined in format, much less confusing in program - aiming this time for greater quality and less quantity of presentation - have more workshop and discussion time, and provide a much more effective forum for delegates of the dozens of NAVS-affiliated local groups to air their views and exchange information on organizational matters etc. There will still, of course, be a full-scale educational program for the individual vegetarian, but with the choice of classes at any given time limited to, say, 5 or 6 items instead of two dozen.

It is also obvious that we must have more youth-orientated events, both educational and recreational. Can we hear from some volunteers for this project?

The 1976 Congress will also be incomparably better organized from the standpoint of paper-work, both before and during the Congress. One of the greatest disappointments this year was seeing our able and energetic NAVS Vice-President and his dedicated and tremendously helpful wife, practically glued to a desk throughout most of the Congress, seeing to a thousand details of last-minute registrations, room assignments, and such. Many long weeks of their patient labors before the Congress, were similarly spent. This year we have drastically simplified Registration procedures, and arranged for the College to handle the room assignments. Yes, we do live and learn.


With the departure of our short-term co-op workers from the h.q. right after the Congress, we have been left quite short of help; and it has taken some three months for us to tie up most of the loose ends of (to say nothing of recuperating from) the Congress. We are still woefully behind in correspondence and magazine publication, but catching up. Nor are we satisfied with the curtailing of certain other important NAVS activities, such as lecture tours.

We are slowly rebuilding our headquarters staff, and again, we are aiming more for quality than quantity. We need at least one more competent and dedicated office worker, willing and eager to do more than just "putting in time" in a job - or inlife in general - and wishing to really help humanity and the animal friends through this selfless work. Such a person must also be willing to work virtually for room and board, although the working and living conditions are cheerful and pleasant. Details will be sent upon request.

In any event, we cannot afford to take so much time and effort out from the other activities for Congresses and now with the experience gained, we should not have to.

But we do wish to impress on all that whether in planning, publicizing, or any other aspect, a vegetarian Congress is a team project, evan as the movement itself.

We will welcome and solicit your comments, your attendance and your assistance, with regard to the 1976 NAVS Congress.


And in closing, we would like to give and publicize out thanks to the many "unsung heroes" of the 1975 Congress staff. Quite apart from and in addition to the volunteer efforts of the more than 100 speakers and educators and the numerous professional entertainers who volunteered their talents; besides the magnificent officials and work force of the University of Maine, there were so many people who helped to make the Congress a great success. Space limits us to only naming those who actually participated on a full-time basis (or nearly so) as a regular NAVS staff member, soecifically for the Congress.

TRANSPORTATION - Randal Blank & Curtis Blank


PUBLICITY - Nellie Shriver and Bob Pinkus

CHILDREN'S CENTER - Carol Thomas, Elly James, Jovanna Perna, Val freeman & Willa Freeman, Helen Story, Celeste Conifer, Wanda Smith, Evon Dinshah.

OFFICE AND INFORMATION - Patti Maloney, Kathy Rimko, Hadie Robinsom, Ben Weiss, Jessica Mintz, Bene Stern, Kerry Snyder & Mike Snyder

GENERAL ASSISTANTS - Rion Strane, John Riehl, Genny Spezia, Stan Cresta, Kathleen Riehl, Leigh Elliot, Nancy Richardson, Don Wilson, and barbara Turk, Rose Solomon.

FLOOR MANAGER - Jack Solomon

ARTIST - Charles W. W. Smith

Nor can we ignore or forget the role played in the Congress from the very beginning, by our Convention Coordinators (Canada) staff, Gaby Popper, Terry & Gil, as well as (in the preliminary stages) Bernie & mary. Without their ideas, advice, assistance, enthusiasm, and other contributions both tangible and otherwise, there never would have been a World Vegetarian Congress in North America at all.

Thanks are due to the NAVS Board of Trustees, and to every member of the Congress Committee, for their valued assistance in both the planning stages and the actual presentation of the Congress. Also to the local groups from coast to coast, and the many individuals also, who recognized the value of the Congress and did their best to help spread the word.

Last but by no means least, we wish to thank the Editor's brother Jal Dinshah and his family, Ursula, Connie & Mike for their kind assistance at the Congress. Jal's means of livelihood precluded his attending the full Congress, so he did the next best thing, and caught two weekends. While on the campus, he proved an able and tireless worker and administrator, ever ready to "plug any leak in the dyke" or to spot little problems and keep them from growing into larger headaches.

It is entirely possible that we have inadvertently omitted someone; if so, you will understand that it is due to a shortness of memory, not of gratitude.

We have already publicly expressed our heartfelt gratitude to the great University crew, and you have expressed your appreciation of the efforts of those who were more or less in the spotlight at the Congress.

But it is no idle platitude to say that the "show could not have gone on" without the talents and abilities, and above all the enthusiastic dedication, of the above-named people, mostly working behind the scenes.

And we thought you would also be interested to know just HOW MUCH of a team effort the Congress really was.