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  • Keyaira Boone

"Feed The Souls" Nourishes From The Inside Out

The vegan food movement has been rapidly expanding as many reconsider if what store shelves have to offer are really best for them and their families. But while the movement has been growing rapidly it’s devotees don’t have the public relations strategy. Their association with snideness, and condescension precedes them making many perspective vegans shy away from even asking questions about the practice.

A few local creatives teamed up with community organizers tried to change the face of veganism by making it more inviting.

They hosted “Feed The Souls” to allow people to actually experience the vegan lifestyle instead of just being lectured about. The event was held in Newark’s Military Park right across the street from the city’s much buzzed about new Whole Foods location.

Broadway Blake founder of Vibes in the City and artists Freakquencee and Maddy (who co-founded the grassroots movement the event was named after) worked closely with the founders of V 4 Veganism, Caremore, Greenhouse, Black Men of Standards and other other contributing organizations and sponsors to make this event a success.

Vibes in the City has collected donations for those experiencing misfortune weekly for months and they brought that same spirit to this event gathering clothes, diapers, toiletries, and other items for those in need.

These lovely ladies contributed to the cause.

So did this gentleman.

The event was not just intended to inform the community about vegan options but also foster artist expression in children and adults who are losing access to creative outlets all the time.

A table was set up for anyone who wished to draw, or paint for as long as they liked.

Some had a little more fun with the paint than others.

Poets and artists from all different musical genres hopped on the mic.

One alternative style band brought down the house forcing everyone to turn their attention to their set.

Some attendees participated in a free yoga class taught by their fellow Jersey girl certified instructor Beki Hafelfinger.

These three young ladies hosted a book giveaway that not only gave away fiction options but practical learning tools as well.

One of them showed off her trendy costume glitter proudly proclaiming “I’m a unicorn!”

It can be difficult for low-income families to afford supplemental learning tools and many are ashamed to ask for help. Being able to acquire them in a fun, loving, environment alleviates the stigma associated with seeking assistance.

Everyone showed off their style.

Volunteers were identifiable by their bright green tee shirts.

But like true Jersey girls they found a way to make the looks their own.

They milled around Military Park answering questions and playing with the children.

They even had time to share a few laughs.

The young men of the “STEP” mentoring program were on the scene.

The event was sponsored by Nike and plenty of participants showed their gratitude by representing the brands wares.

Some of the smaller children played with the sporting equipment they provided.

We might have a baby Beckham on our hands!

This father and son shared lots of love and laughter as they soaked up the sun.

A local dance studio owner arrived with some friends in tow.

Students from Rutgers and Seton Hall stopped by to check out the fun.

The Newark Campus has traditionally been a hub of culture in the city. Chef Nikko provided complimentary vegan options to the crowd serving everyone with a smile.

At the end of the event attendees were presented with lime green reusable grocery tote bags with the words “Feed The Souls” reminding them to seek health from the inside out.

For more information about Vibes in the City visit their Facebook page.

For more information about Nike’s corporate social responsibility activities visit their website here.

#communityevent #vegan #philanthrophy #givingback #donations #health #art #schoolsupplies #vibesinthecity #caremore #rutgers

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