Vegan culture, and not theoretical, practical. In Vallevegan you live with animals, to save them, protect them and give an example of how you can lead a lifestyle inspired by the utmost respect for the animal kingdom. Without isolating himself from the world, however. Piero Liberati, the founder of Vallevegan, talks about what he has built and what he is about to build, together with the local community.
1) When were you born and how?
We were born on January 31, 2006. The initial idea was to find land outside the built-up areas in which to host and care for abused animals, mainly from forms of exploitation and maltreatment more "accepted" by common thought, such as farms and laboratories. The search for the place was done through word of mouth or announcements, while the character and aims of the foundation derived from years of personal reflections and experiences related to vegan culture, mostly.
2) What is your "mission"?
The goal is to save and free as many animals as possible and recreate a habitat suitable for them and for all the people who want to deepen the vegan culture putting into practice an "alternative" lifestyle. Own of vegan culture we are talking about developing a lifestyle in which animals are not exploited in any case. Do not eat their meats and their derivatives, do not use their by-products and do not use them for experimentation, entertainment, profit. In Italy more and more people embrace this ethical choice, around us there is a large network of support.
3) What is Vallevegan today? Who lives there and how?
In Vallevegan, in addition to about 200 animals, there are between two and five people. In eight years we can certainly affirm that our presence on the territory, with the inhabitants of the upper Aniene valley and gods Prenestini-Simbruini mountains, it is very strong. In addition to national and international resonance as a site dedicated to vegan culture, we are very attentive to the roots: they are essential for us, and it is essential now to be able to have mutual support with those who have always lived these lands.
4) Can we come and visit you?
Vallevegan was born as open place. Over time we have had to review this condition: despite the excellent experiences with most of our guests, friends, collaborators, some have also been strongly negative. They made us lose sight of our goals related to promoting one vegan culture serious and respectful. It is therefore important for us to underline that those who come, informing us first, are welcome but must do it for the animals and to build the project vegan culture, not for himself.
5) Do you carry out any promotion / awareness activities?
We have also been active for years at an international level for the dissemination of vegan culture, especially with direct actions. We make camps against the poaching, for example, in Cyprus, Malta, France, Spain and Italy. Or events, dinners and information tables, to spread the vegan culture, its principles, the first steps to get closer to it.
6) Do you have any plans for the future?
The direction is not to be dedicated hermits vegan culture, closed to the world: we want more and more to tell our experience explaining that it is necessary to change direction in order to live better. We need to develop a small economic activity to be able to live better, us and the animals who are here. The idea is to build a dog boarding house and a vineyard, helped by volunteers and local inhabitants.
7) How is the situation of veganism in Italy?
The growth and spread of the vegan culture in Italy but also in Europe it is exponential compared to that of those who follow an ethical lifestyle. Being vegan, if associated with the collection,self-production, to the struggle of every type of exploitation, is the first revolution. Unfortunately, when a phenomenon becomes mass, there is a risk that the average approaches indifference. In Europe there are many types of movements and projects carried out, perhaps the most interesting are the less known ones.