College students, staff and faculty embraced the opportunity to give a plant-based diet a go as South West College (SWC) celebrated World Vegan month by focusing on local and sustainable food, to mark the worldwide annual awareness month, which kicked off 1 November.
The month-long celebration supported by the Vegan Society aimed to raise the profile of plant-based foods, provide alternatives, and increase access to healthy, sustainable meal options served across all campuses. The positive initiative ties in with the Colleges focus on local and sustainable food, promoting sustainable, humane farming and healthy diets using local, seasonal, organic food and vegetable protein.
The initiative successfully launched with a month-long Meat Free Monday Competition, that encouraged students and staff to get involved by providing plant-based recipes. With entries from staff and students across all campuses, James O’Neill, Erne Campus was selected as the winner with three entries, and took home an eye watering hamper of sustainable and vegan goodies. Second place prizes were given to Fiona McCauley, Erne Campus, Niall Mimagh, Dungannon Campus and Joanne Murphy. Runner up prizes were awarded to Level 1 Employment, Training and Personal Development students Mark Nethery, Meave Grimes, Chloe Clyde, Dawid Muszelik and Peter Clarke.
Over the course of the month, the environmental benefits of a plant-based lifestyle and sustainable healthy recipes took centre stage. New signage was also displayed, all adding up to the grand finale, that featured an all-day ‘No Meat Monday’ event on the 28 November where staff and students embraced the opportunity to eat plant -based on the day. Students relished the opportunity to avail of a free plant-based breakfast and goodies, as well as vouchers that allowed them to pick up a hot vegan treat on campus.