Volunteer Spotlight: John Federico
Category : Uncategorized
John Federico only became actively involved in animal rights activism about a year ago but I honestly don’t know how we survived before he came on the scene! He has done such a great deal of work for us in 2013 and his dedication and passion are greatly appreciated.
John became vegan in 2009 after being vegetarian for most of his life. His reasons for being vegetarian were related to health and fitness and it wasn’t until later, after his children were born, that he became aware of the horrors of factory farming. Reading the book ‘Eating Animals’ by Jonathan Safran Foer was the tipping point for him to become vegan.
Still, John wasn’t really aware of animal advocacy groups. One year he joined Sinead Sanders as she performed at the Walk For Farm Animals and that’s when he discovered like minded people. He didn’t see himself as a rebel type, however, and believed his silent personal protest was enough. Sinead then brought him out to one of Liberation BC’s morning chicken vigils at the Hallmark Poultry Slaughterhouse at Hastings and he Commercial. “I spent time in the alley, close up to those poor birds and saw that more was needed to be done for them,” said John. Since that day, back in April, he has attended every vigil except one! And he stays for the full 2 hours every time! In fact, John makes the vigils possible because he packs up the signs at the end of each one and gets them back to me. When I was away for most of the summer and then again at Christmas, I was concerned about the vigils carrying on. John and several other dedicated activists kept them alive!
John’s volunteer work has moved beyond just the chicken vigils. He wore our famous cow costume at Veg Fest this past summer and was approached by a rep for the BC Lions who liked the costume and John’s antics. She invited him to participate in the annual BC Day football game that featured a halftime soccer game between 20 mascots! John recruited the help of another amazing Liberation BC volunteer, Taylor Freeman who took photos. At halftime, John was introduced as ‘Daisy the Cow’ from Liberation BC. On the back of the costume, in huge block letters, were the words “GO VEGAN!!” As the goalie for his team, ‘Daisy’ hammed it up, blowing kisses and falling on his back when trying to kick the ball! Several people came up to him afterwards and told him that the soccer game was the best part of the day!
In September, John was instrumental in helping to hand out 400 leaflets to walkers at the SPCA’s Paws for a Cause, inviting them to join the Walk for Farm Animals. He has also helped us at many other leafletting events.
John is a musician who hosts an Open Mic night every Saturday night at the Wired Monk Cafe on 4th Ave. He loves meeting all the wonderful, talented singers and musicians. He has his own CD called ‘Conscience Free’. He also feels blessed be able to play Kirtan music at Yoga West, Kundalini Yoga being another of John’s loves.
John Federico is an amazing person who gives so much of himself to others and here at Liberation BC, we don’t know what we’d do without him! As for John, he says he is “grateful to have an established organization where I can work and express my desire to help animals. If it’s handing out leaflets, holding a sign, or dressing as a cow, it is always time well spent. To be among like minded people working together for these precious beings on earth helps me believe there is a chance for an awakening. There is nothing more satisfying than doing something selflessly!” With people like John on our side, the future is full of hope!