Every Day is Earth Day
There are 11 days to go in our grassroots fundraising campaign to kickstart the Vegtoons animated series. In terms of funding the project and spreading the word, thank you to everyone who has pitched in thus far.
Our biggest challenge right now is in reaching a wide enough community to let them know about the project. We have to reach ever widening circles of potential supporters, so they can back the Vegtoons show and make it possible.
The majority of our backers are not affiliated with the vegetarian and environmental communities. As one financial supporter wrote on her Facebook page: "I am not personally a vegetarian, however I do believe in being healthy and eating right :) This is a very lovely cartoon series idea. I love the subtle humor and the characters seem utterly charming! Visit Kickstarter to support this project :D"
Another omnivorous fellow wrote: "Check it out. A great project and a worthy cause. It's fun, entertaining and helps educate about an important message that very few people are talking about. Our diet, the food we consume, affects personal and environmental health and has a significant economic impact on our nation. Learn more and help spread the word."
How cool is that? (Hint: Very cool.) This is the whole purpose and spirit of the Vegtoons show -- to inspire, to encourage, and to cultivate a new kind of cultural discourse.
Vegtoons is meant to be educational and heartening. It is not the traditional kind of programming that gets made, that you'll see on television. As a studio executive once said, "Have no illusions about it. Our programming is designed to keep people in their seats long enough to see the commercials." Television is a business. Executives seek to draw the largest possible audience, so they can generate the most advertising dollars.
While Vegtoons promotes the values of an eco-friendly and compassionate lifestyle, it's not designed with profit in mind. This is why we're sidestepping the gatekeepers of traditional programming. This is why we're producing the show to be freely available and distributed online. This is why we're exploring alternative approaches in raising money for production.
As we reach out for others to become collaborators and co-creators in making the Vegtoons show, the question naturally arises: "What's in it for me?"
The most straightforward answer is a culture founded in respect and kindness, along with improved personal and planetary health. In truth, the majority of people who embrace a plant-based diet will do so, at least initially, for personal reasons. Like President Bill Clinton, who is now essentially vegan, he wanted to reverse his coronary heart disease and add years to his life, if only to enjoy his future grandchildren. Later on, people often come to appreciate the other benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle, including the environmental and ethical impacts.
Money is a form of energy. It facilitates activity in the world. As of now, 13% of our financial backers have pledged their support without any associated reward. They are contributing simply for its own sake. For others, we have special gifts as a way to celebrate your help in bringing the Vegtoons show to life.
In this spirit, we are now offering two tickets to a Caribbean cruise known as Holistic Holiday at Sea. On its 10th anniversary, the Italian luxury liner will set sail from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida for a week-long voyage (March 2-9, 2013) to Mexico, Honduras, Grand Cayman and Jamaica. With vegan cuisine, yoga, cooking classes, educational seminars and evening parties, the cruise has been described as invigorating and life-changing. Speakers this year include Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. Neal Barnard, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, and Rory Freedman.
Please see our campaign home page for details of more pledge rewards, including designer handbags from GUNAS, tree-planting from Trees for Life, original watercolor paintings by animation director Tomm Moore, and exclusive t-shirts for Kickstarter backers.
With your generosity and effort -- in contributing to the Vegtoons show, in spreading the word -- we are able to produce an educational initiative that is ahead of the cultural curve. You can always manage and increase your pledge amount, as you see fit.
We know that people are interested to support our grassroots fundraising campaign, even with a "vote" of one dollar. We just have to reach enough people in time. There are only 11 days left. Pick up the phone. Send emails. Rekindle old connections. Together, let's make it happen.