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News from the Congresses
World Congress 1996 update; European Congress 1995 report; Hosting a Congress
from IVU Newsletter, October 1995

World Congress 1996 - Change of Venue

Due to internal organisational problems the Australian Vegetarian Society found it necessary to cancel its offer to host the world vegetarian congress in April, 1996. Whilst this is very much regretted, it is good to know that we have been able to make altemative arrangements.

1996 - Pennsylvania U.S.A.

Yes, we have arranged for the North American Vegetarian Society to host the world vegetarian congress. NAVS is well known for its very successful organisation of the 1984 world vegetarian congress in Baltimore. Now it will host our congress in Pennsylvania from 29th July -4th August, 1996. The venue will be the University of Pittsburgh campus at Johnstown, not too far from the city of Pittsburgh and its international airport.

It is possible to fly from Pittsburgh airport to Johnstown. The area is in the Appalachian Mountains and has considerable beauty and interest. Opportunities for hiking and water spouts on the numerous lakes and rivers will appeal to outdoor enthusiasts. It is a centre of U.S. history being close to the sites of many Civil War battles so museums and historic sites are many.

Accommodation is in twin rooms with facilities of a motel standard or in twin rooms with a bathroom between two rooms. An entertaining programme of lectures by internationally well-known personalities will be supported by workshops, excursions and a good variety of social activities.

Please, Please, PLEASE inform your members about the Congress. Please put regular reports on the congress arrangements in your magazine or newsletter. Please circulate all the information that is sent to you.

This is an opportunity to meet old friends, make new ones, and to catch up on the latest research findings on vegetarianism and animal welfare matters.

Address any queries about the congress to the Hon. General Secretary or
North American Vegetarian Society, P.O. Box 72, Dolgeville, 13329, New York, U.S.A.
- Tel: (518) 568-7970


European Vegetarian Union Congress

Bratislava, Slovakia

The European region of IVU held its fifth congress in late July this year and it was the first such congress in Eastern/Middle Europe. It was good to see so many people from the former Soviet Bloc enjoying their freedom to be vegetarian and to join others to discuss matters of mutual interest and to meet people from various parts of the world. The programme contained a good range of lectures on various aspects of vegetarianism including agriculture, animal rights, ethics, moral, environmental and medical/scientific matters. In addition workshops dealt with the promotion of the cause and ways of achieving such goals.

Several interesting excursions were included in the programme. The meal arrangements were very good with a vegetarian chef taking charge of the hotel kitchens for our meals. Both vegetarians and vegans were adequately catered for. The banquet which aimed to raise funds to promote vegetarianism in the former socialist countries was well supported and attended by the mayor of Bratislava and his wife.

A particular feature of the congress was the amount of publicity generated and the organisers deserve particular congratulations on their success. Numerous press, inagaaine, radio and television interviews were given and a press conference was well attended.

Our thanks and congratulations to the organisers for a very successful congress. We look forward to more such events in Eastern/Middle Europe in the future.

Health Challenge for Europe

from Bratislava Congress

At the fifth European Vegetarian Congress in Bratislava from 23rd-28th July eminent speakers from all over Europe took a firm stand on food and animal rights issues. Participants called upon the European Union, the European Parliament and the Governments of all European states to achieve the following aims through clear and uniform legislation:

  1. Vegetarian food should be freely available in all public institutions.
  2. The transport of live animals across Europe should be reduced to a minimum and welfare regulations strictly enforced.
  3. Cruel factory farming methods should be abolished and small traditional farming enterprises encouraged.
  4. The quality of the food supply should not be jeopardised by additives, genetic engineering and irradiation.
How much better it will be for all if Governments were to adhere to these proposals, and not only in Europe!!

Hosting a World or Regional Vegetarian Congress

At the 1996 world vegetarian congress in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, USA, the member societies will vote for the venue for the world vegetarian congress in the year 2,000. Any IVU member society can offer to host a world congress and it needs to present its proposal to the Hon. General Secretary in the first instance. He will advise on the procedure and give advice on how to proceed. At the meeting of member societies during a congress any applicant to host gives a presentation with details of where, when and how they propose to organise a congress should the members accept their proposal. The member societies vote on the competing bids.

Many are very worried about taking on such a task but there is considerable help and advice available. Apart from the help offered by IVU, most countries have very active conference and convention bureaux whose task is to encourage the holding of such events in their country. In many cases, individual cities have their own convention bureau. If you approach a convention bureau they will supply literature on hosting a congress and give considerable advice on how to proceed. In addition, many countries are so keen on having congress business that they offer grants to help finance the work necessary to develop a proposal. Do not worry about approaching them since they are very enthusiastic about any proposal for a congress in their area or country. Such assistance is equally available to any country offering to host a regional congress.

Regional congresses are a good way of getting experience of running a congress since they usually attract considerably less participants which makes things easier to manage. In the case of North America and Europe, VUNA and EVU respectively are responsible for dealing with applications to host regional congresses. Normally a regional congress is arranged in the year between a world congress since world congresses are arranged every two years. In Australasia and India and the East the regional secretary will be able to advise about hosting a congress in the relevant region. For other parts of the world, contact the Hon. General Secretary of IVU, Maxwell G.Lee who should also be approached for any further advice about congress organisation.

Contributions to IVU News are welcomed. Material published does not necessarily reflect the views of the editor or the policy of the International Vegetarian Union.