We All Need Humane Education: 10 Things You Can Do Today to Learn How to Make the World a Better Place
1. Have a humane educator come and speak at/to your school, scout group meeting, special event, or even plan a field trip!! Request a representative from Cotton Branch Farm Animal Sanctuary come to your classroom or even schedule a trip to the sanctuary! Cotton Branch has teamed up with the Humane League- Charlotte and offers well-rounded and very educational, humane education talks on how to eat kind, why it's important, and how to change the world for farm animals! Check it out here and contact Josh today to schedule a humane education presentation!
2. Shop locally! This not only helps your community, but it also allows you to meet your local produce farmers and see where your food comes from, as well as see what they do to help the environment.
3. Volunteer at an animal shelter, rescue, or sanctuary! When you work with the animals, whether it's during feeding time, building shelters, walking dogs, socializing with pigs, you learn about these animals and get to know them. It makes you think twice before wanting to eat meat or buy a dog from a pet store or breeder.
4. Plant a garden! When you plant a garden, you not only eat healthier, but you help the planet! Whether you have a plot of land or flowers in a pot, (even a windowsill herb garden), it all counts! Pollinators, such as bees and butterflies, will thank you!
5. Get schooled on animal overpopulation from a veterinarian, animal shelter worker, or a humane educator. There are thousands of animals in shelters right now, including farm sanctuaries, looking for their forever homes. Adopt, don't shop!
6. Reduce, reuse, and recycle, (and refuse)! Everything can be used again, and if it can't, there is usually a product out there that you can buy instead of the disposable variety and you’ll be able to reuse it over and over again. For example, instead of using plastic straws, refuse them, (politely!), when you’re buying a drink in public and bring/buy a stainless steel straw instead. Try to not use plastic as well, (a lot of it isn't actually recyclable). Make sure to check labels on the bottom of the product to see if it can be recycled in your area.
7. Compost those food scraps! Apple cores, banana peels, wood chips, grass clippings, fallen leaves, sticks, cardboard, newspaper, vegetable scraps, and more! Most food is compostable and doesn't need to be in the trash, but instead in a compost bin! Even if you don't garden, composting is a great way to reduce trash that goes in landfills, (and no, it unfortunately doesn't really compost very well at the landfill when it's with all of that other trash that can't be composted). Foods that don’t compost well and will just attract wildlife include: dairy products and meat, (but if we are eating kind, we won't have these products to even dispose of).
8. Eat a kind diet! For the animals, the planet, and yourself, steer clear of animal products. Animals suffer immensely when they are exploited (not just for food, but in the name of entertainment, the clothing industry, animal experimentation, etc.). Not only do animals suffer, but so do the planet and our bodies. Forests are being cleared to make room for "cattle grazing", oceans are being depleted because of overfishing, farm animal feces contaminate ground water, raising animals for meat has a huge carbon footprint, and the list goes on. Than what is there to eat? Check out the following links for some tips, yummy recipes and information on how to transition to eating kind!
9. Volunteer your time to help those in need! A big part of humane education is learning to be kind to others, not just the animals and the environment, but other humans. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, become a foster parent, start a clothing drive: the list of activities to help one another goes on and on.
10. Share a meal! Share a meal with friends, family, neighbors or even strangers! Start a kind potluck group and share yummy, veg recipes! If you want, try to schedule a volunteer day at Cotton Branch Farm Animal Sanctuary and bring some of those delicious veggies/fruits to share with the animals, (they'll definitely enjoy just as much as you)!