Latest comments on the Animal Advocacy Forum

Comments on 2024-06-07

Alene @ 2024-05-09T18:14 (+2) in response to Using shareholder activism to help animals

Super cool! Thank you for writing this, Max! 

 

If anyone reading this gets involved in shareholder activism, please let me know. 

 

There's another little extra way you can help animals if you own shares in a company, in addition to doing shareholder activism. Learn a little more here: legalimpactforchickens.org/investors, or reach out to me! 

Max Carpendale @ 2024-06-07T10:16 (+1)

Thanks so much,  Alene! And thanks for making others aware of this opportunity



Comments on 2024-06-04

LaurenKohler @ 2024-06-04T16:53 (+1) in response to Cutting Through the Controversy on Alt Proteins as Ultra-Processed Foods

Thank you, Amie and Caryn, for this great summary of the discussion! Stray Dog Institute is so grateful to have had the privilege of bringing this topic to the AVA mainstage with such incredible panelists!



Comments on 2024-05-22

Mr Adam @ 2024-05-22T19:39 (+2) in response to Animal welfare in the United States: Opportunities for impact

Improving animal welfare in the United States presents numerous opportunities for impact. Key areas to focus on include strengthening legislation to protect animals, supporting shelters and rescue organizations, promoting humane education, and encouraging adoption over breeding. Additionally, advocating for better conditions in factory farming and increasing public awareness about animal rights can lead to significant positive changes. By working together, we can create a more compassionate society for all animals.



Comments on 2024-05-21

Iselda Livoni - Arba Peru @ 2024-05-21T18:58 (+1) in response to Iselda Livoni - Arba Peru's Quick takes

Hello everyone!

We have three new commitments for Peru 🇵🇪!!

1-. Sweet Freeze Bakery announces its 100% commitment for December 2024.
Engagement link: https://www.instagram.com/p/C4GcIyVO371/?igsh=NW0zeWFvMWVic3By

Scale: National (Peru)

Schedule: First contact in February 2024, follow-up every 10 days.

Who: ARBA

Failed tactics: There were none from the beginning, communication was very good.

Successful tactics: Direct conversations with the owners, linking them directly with cage-free producers in the area. Phone calls and WhatsApp messages.

Scalability: Sweet Freeze Bakery is a company in the pastry business with excellent acceptance in the districts with the most inhabitants in Lima.

Follow-up: We will keep in touch to request reports and bring producers closer.

2- Red Coffee Shop, announces its cage free commitment to be 100% complete by 2025
Commitment link
https://www.instagram.com/s/aGlnaGxpZ2h0OjE4MDIxNjUzMDI3MTU3MjIz?story_media_id=3358582698278345950&igsh=a2Q1dGVmZjdsZzh5

Scale: National (Peru)

Schedule: First contact in December 2023, follow-up every 10 days.

Who: ARBA

Failed tactics: There were none, from the beginning communication was very good.

Successful tactics: Direct conversations with the owners to directly contact cage-free producers in the area. In-person visit, phone calls and WhatsApp messages.

Scalability: Company in the pastry - cafeteria sector with excellent acceptance in a district that still has no commitment.

Follow-up: We will keep in touch to request reports and bring producers closer.

3- Mascookie Pet Snack, a pet cookie brand, announces its commitment to be 100% complete by the end of 2024.

Engagement link https://sites.google.com/view/mascookiegalletas/noticias

Scale: National (Peru)

Schedule: First contact in February February 2024, follow-up every 10 days.

Who: ARBA

Failed tactics: They liked the idea of making the change after a week of conversations.

Successful tactics: Direct conversations with the owners, linking them directly with cage-free producers in the area. The commitment is aligned with your objective and vision as a company.

Scalability: This important brand has massive distribution in veterinaries, pet shops and soon in supermarkets, it is the first pet food brand to make a cage-free commitment in Peru.

Follow-up: We will keep in touch to request reports and bring producers closer.

Thank you



Comments on 2024-05-15

Nithin Ravi @ 2024-05-15T14:25 (+2) in response to The moral ambiguity of fishing on wild aquatic animal populations

Interesting, thanks for sharing Michael!



Comments on 2024-05-09

Alene @ 2024-05-09T18:14 (+2) in response to Using shareholder activism to help animals

Super cool! Thank you for writing this, Max! 

 

If anyone reading this gets involved in shareholder activism, please let me know. 

 

There's another little extra way you can help animals if you own shares in a company, in addition to doing shareholder activism. Learn a little more here: legalimpactforchickens.org/investors, or reach out to me! 



Comments on 2024-05-07

thedogsmeal @ 2024-05-07T18:10 (+1) in response to You're Invited: Stray Dog Institute's Newest Report on Alt Proteins

Exciting news! Stray Dog Institute is releasing a groundbreaking report on plant-based alternative proteins in the US. Join their webinar on February 29th for insights and recommendations. Register now! 🌱📊

 

 

 


 



Comments on 2024-05-06

Iselda Livoni - Arba Peru @ 2024-05-06T21:28 (+1) in response to Iselda Livoni - Arba Peru's Quick takes

Hello !

We conducted a new research on the poultry industry in Peru, millions of hens and chickens are used annually to meet the demand for eggs and meat.

ARBA website: https://arba.pe/boletin-arba/como-se-manifiesta-la-crueldad-y-la-falta-de-piedad-en-la-industria-avicola/

YouTube: https://youtu.be/tk_FjJxV0Z0

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/C6eW65VOSKm/

Peru is one of the countries with the highest consumption of eggs and chicken in Latin America, with a high percentage of informal industry that is not visible or transparent through the Peruvian state and its ministry of agriculture.

Have a good week,
Iselda



Comments on 2024-05-04

lostinsauces @ 2024-03-28T13:34 (+1) in response to The Potential Impact of AI in Animal Advocacy & The Need For More Funding In This Space

Hi Sam! I want to apologize for taking so long to respond. I'll try to be quicker in the future if there is more to discuss after my response here. I also really appreciate you taking the time to respond in such detail. Here are some poorly organized thoughts:

  1. I appreciate you outlining the specific use cases you have for AI in this space. I certainly like the idea of bots that automatically provide factual information. I'm not sure 100% automation will be possible without a good deal of regrettable or borderline false positives or hallucinations, but it could at least automate surfacing misleading information with high visibility. I think the social media use case makes a ton of sense, but it's less clear to me that this won't be solved by a private company.
  2. Thanks for clarifying the limitations of fine-tuning! I hadn't realized that. I'm still a little unsure about the feasibility of training your own models to be capable AI chatbots, though. How big of a non-speciesist corpus do you expect to be able to assemble, and how does it compare to the size and quality of the training data from foundation models? You might have found a way of amassing a ton of data, in which case, kudos. If not, however, I wonder if it would make more sense to focus on developing techniques to clean speciesist data out of corpuses, which could be used by the bigger AI labs. Overall, I'm still not entirely sold on the theory of change with AI powered chatbots, but I'm also not sure exactly what kind of world we're heading into. My sense is that people mostly change their habits/views out of self-interest or under influence from their close peers. I do think personalized messaging/ads could improve the quality of outreach efforts, but where do you get the prerequisite data on the individuals?
  3. I also like your point that advocacy is most impactful when you can point to specific solutions. My sense is that suggesting techniques for pruning their corpuses of speciesist data is more tractable than showing them presumably less capable models trained on a different dataset. This paper might also be inspirational.
Sam Tucker @ 2024-05-04T04:45 (+2)

No problem, I likewise apologise for taking so long to get this response back to you as well! 

I certainly agree that hallucinations are a huge limitation for using current LLMs in chatbots or automated actions of any kind. Hallucinations are far more likely to occur on questions outside of an LLMs training data, so training an LLM specifically on data relevant to animal advocacy should reduce the frequency of hallucinations. 

In addition, the database we build will be used for retrieval augmented generation to ground the responses in fact and provide citations for sources in addition to using it as training data.

These two approaches combined with training techniques designed to reduce hallucinations (such as converting graphs showing relationships between objects to text for training data and using data augmentation to increase diversity in the dataset) will make the LLM we train far more reliable and less likely to hallucinate on animal rights issues.

I should clarify that when I say we are training an LLM, we won't be doing this entirely from scratch. We will begin with a pre-trained state of the art open source model, then continue pre-training, before fine-tuning and finally building it into specific tools for specific use cases. This requires far less data and compute power compared to training an LLM from the ground up.

As for how much data we can collect, we've surveyed more than 100 leaders and employees of animal charities and the willingness to share data is very high, more than 70% are willing to share data for training.

Your point about developing techniques to clean speciesist data out of corpuses is an excellent one and we absolutely are planning to do this as well. After we collect data from animal advocacy organisations, the next step is having volunteers provide human feedback on how different responses affect animals. We will use this data to create speciesism detection and ranking models (as well as a diverse range of models predicting other relevant information, such as how logically impactful, culturally sensitive or generally persuasive a message is), which we will open source to allow anyone to use them to clean any dataset of content that is harmful to animals.

This is quite a complex topic and it's often hard to detail our plan accurately in a succinct way as a result, so I've written a blog post on our website that explains our approach in more detail here: https://www.openpaws.ai/blog/why-animal-advocates-need-our-own-large-language-model

This approach is guided by our comprehensive literature review, which can be found here: https://www.openpaws.ai/blog/literature-review-on-developing-artificial-intelligence-to-advocate-for-animal-rights

Thank you for sharing that paper about the WMDP benchmark, there are certainly a lot of benchmarks that could be adapted to measuring the impact of content on animals. There's also recently been work on developing benchmarks specifically for detecting speciesism, like the AnimaLLM proof-of-concept evaluation from the paper "The Case for Animal-Friendly AI": https://arxiv.org/abs/2403.01199

I definitely agree that benchmarks and evaluations in general will play a huge role in aligning AI with the interests of animals and this is something we aim to contribute to through our work as well wherever we can.



Comments on 2024-04-30

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-04-30T16:40 (+3) in response to Eleanor McAree's Quick takes

Revealed: Tyson Foods dumps millions of pounds of toxic pollutants into US rivers and lakes

I just wanted to share this excellent research from the Union of Concerned Scientists and the article by the Guardian:  https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2024/apr/30/tyson-foods-toxic-pollutants-lakes-rivers



Comments on 2024-04-29

Animal Ask @ 2024-04-29T14:35 (+1) in response to Volunteer Opportunity: Ask your parents about their stock.

Hi @Alene! Thank you for working on this! We at Animal Ask just published an extensive report on shareholder activism. If interested, you can access it here, in case you missed it. :) 



Comments on 2024-04-12

Sophika Kostyniuk @ 2024-04-12T18:38 (+2) in response to California OCTO Act Passes First Committee

And a huge congratulations to Giulia Malerbi, Aquatic Life Institute's Global Policy Lead, for driving this opportunity forward with our key partners, and coordinating numerous activities in the background. 



Comments on 2024-04-03

David van Beveren @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA team, fantastic to have you here with us today!

  • Are there any features on the WHOVA app that we should check out that is generally not used enough that you think would provide attendees value?
  • For those who can only go to 1 or 2 conferences a year: what would you say is the defining difference between AVA Summit conferences and other conferences in our movement?
  • Lastly, but most importantly, is there a reason the AVA Summit has made the decision to not include these snacks at every table?

Thanks! :)

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:49 (+2)

Hi David! Thanks for the questions. 

Talking about features of the Whova app, one may wonder, when and how can Whova be accessed?

We are publishing Whova for event communications in mid-April. Everyone will receive an email notification to the same email address that they used to register when it has been published, which is the same email everyone will need to use in order to login and access the AVA DC event.

For any further questions, I invite all who are interested to join our AVA International Slack channel -- we are always there to chat and answer questions!

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:40 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi Dan, Amie here. Thank you so much for this question. I was hoping someone would ask it! 

We are publishing the official program TODAY between 12-2 pm PT. We are just finishing up adding it to our website and will announce it across social media as soon as it is complete! 

Feel free to check that link above any time after 2 pm PT today and it will be there!

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:46 (+1)

How exciting! 

Dan Cooper @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

This will be my first time to D.C. are there any off-program activities happening before or after the Summit?

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:44 (+1)

Hi Dan, I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. We added a ton of new features this year! 

  • Meet Up Day! 
  • Rosie's Farm Sanctuary is offering special tours Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday
  • D.C. Local Max Broad is leading Lincoln Assassination Tour Wednesday evening, or join the self-led Monuments at Night tour
  • Wrap up Wednesday night with D.C. Vegan Drinks
  • Thursday we have a Library of Congress visit
  • Meditation workshops
  • Sunday Afternoon Soccer Game

And more! See all the details here! 

We look forward to meeting you in May! 

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:14 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi Franka! 

As Taylor mentioned you can find those details and more on our AVA Policies Page

For ease, you can see all the details below: Exhibitor registration and load-in will begin at 2pm on Thursday, May 16th. Please make every effort to finish setting up by 6pm.

Exhibitor tear-down will begin at 2PM on the 19th.

While we encourage you to table any time from 8 - 5 PM on the 17-18th, and 8 - 2 PM on the 18th. peak exhibit hours will be during breaks and lunches. We ask that a staffer be at your table for those peak exhibit hours, with the others being optional.

Please follow the exact details below to ship your exhibit supplies. If you are sending swag, please make sure it is shipped and labeled separately per the instructions.

While we encourage you to table any time from 7 - 1:00 PM on the 17-19th, peak exhibit hours will be during breaks and lunches. We ask that a staffer be at your table for those peak exhibit hours, with the others being optional.

Registered exhibitors have access to all AVA Summit provided meals.

Please note nothing can be affixed to the hotel walls. If you have signage, please come prepared with pipes or easels.

Preferred Printer

Save time, shipping costs, and carbon emissions by using our preferred printer! The AVA Summit has teamed up with a local print shop, Digi Quick Print, to offer you a 10% discount on printing services, free delivery to the hotel, and a go-to plan for any last minute needs.

To qualify for this deal please contact both brian@digiqp.com and matt@digiqp.com and mention the AVA Summit.

Note: For simple jobs please give 2-5 business days notice. For larger and more complicated jobs please allow 7-10 business days. *If your project is for the Swag Bags please take special note of the instructions listed below.

Shipping to the hotel

Please keep note of your tracking number - if the hotel is looking for your package that is how they will find it

Attn: Sales/Convention Services

Guest Name - AVA Summit Hilton Alexandria Mark Center 5000 Seminary Rd Alexandria, VA 22311, United States

Due to the limited storage space, packages may be delivered to the Hotel three working days prior to the date of the function. Please note the below charges will reflect on your guest room or invoice. Please follow the below instructions to ensure your packages arrive in the correct place!

Incoming Packages are handled as follows: Express Envelopes are complementary and are held at the front desk. Packages/Boxes are charged at $6.00 each. Pallets are charged at $150.00 each. Cases/Crates are charged at $75.00 each.

Outgoing packages are handled as follows: Express Envelopes are complementary and can be sent from the front desk. Packages/Boxes are charged at $6.00 each. Pallets are charged at $150.00 each. Cases/Crates are charged at $75.00 each. Handling charges cannot be collected by the shipper’s account number, therefore please pay handling charges with one of the following methods: cash, check, or credit card.

There is a printer if you need to print off labels, but there is no shipping office at the hotel. We recommend bringing pre-paid labels if possible and scheduling a pick-up with your shipping provider.

Swag Shipping - The first 500 attendees will receive a swag bag at registration. If you are a Silver Sponsor or above or have otherwise arranged to include an item in our attendee Swag Bag, please make sure your swag items arrive by Tuesday, May 14th. We will build the bags on the 15th. Items received after the 14th are not guaranteed to be included in the bags.

Please keep note of your tracking number - if the hotel is looking for your package that is how they will find it

Attn: Sales/Convention Services

AVA SWAG - Your Org

Hilton Alexandria Mark Center

5000 Seminary Rd

Alexandria, VA 22311, United States

Exhibit Needs

If you purchased a WiFi/Power Upgrade, or are a Sponsor at any level, your A/V needs should be taken care of already! Additional requests may result in charges from the hotel.

→ Please contact Amanda@AVASummit.com for further hotel related questions


 

Franka Schoening @ 2024-04-03T17:44 (+1)

Thanks so much, Amanda, for sharing this. I will read through it in detail and follow up with any questions via email if needed. See you next month!!

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:39 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

People will LOVE your table;)

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:43 (+1)

I will definitely stop by to try some of these snacks I've heard so much about!

Vikram Singh @ 2024-04-03T17:23 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Thank you!

James Morgan @ 2024-04-03T17:42 (+1)

There is an absolutely amazing Ethiopian restaurant within walking distance! Although I definitely recommend following Amanda's advice, Planted Society have some fantastic collaborations.

Dan Cooper @ 2024-04-03T17:30 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

When will the program be published?

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:40 (+1)

Hi Dan, Amie here. Thank you so much for this question. I was hoping someone would ask it! 

We are publishing the official program TODAY between 12-2 pm PT. We are just finishing up adding it to our website and will announce it across social media as soon as it is complete! 

Feel free to check that link above any time after 2 pm PT today and it will be there!

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:18 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi David, I’m sorry I got you addicted to Cheddalicious Plant Based Snacks. I’m glad to know you’ll be giving them away at the VH Exhibit Table at AVA D.C. 

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:39 (+1)

People will LOVE your table;)

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Thanks, Taylor! Hi Alexia! 

You will still want to arrive on time on Thursday morning to participate in the many Meet Up and Networking Sessions on Thursday. You can learn more about them here. 

Alexia Dean @ 2024-04-03T17:39 (+1)

Thank you Taylor and Amanda!

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:32 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi Alexia, Julia here. This post might be helpful for you: https://forum.fastcommunity.org/posts/zJ6PkchvLyGvowkd4/how-do-you-benefit-most-from-attending-the-ava-summit?utm_campaign=post_share&utm_source=link 

We're looking forward to seeing you there!

Alexia Dean @ 2024-04-03T17:39 (+1)

Thank you Julia!

Dan Cooper @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

This will be my first time to D.C. are there any off-program activities happening before or after the Summit?

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:38 (+1)

Hi Dan, I’m Julia, AVA International’s Executive Director. This post might be helpful for you: https://forum.fastcommunity.org/posts/zJ6PkchvLyGvowkd4/how-do-you-benefit-most-from-attending-the-ava-summit?utm_campaign=post_share&utm_source=link 

Joaquín Triñanes @ 2024-04-03T17:05 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Could you tell us about a speaker or session from this conference that you're particularly excited about and why?

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+2)

Hi Joaquín, My name is Amie, great to e-meet you! 

I’m truly excited about all of our speakers, but particularly excited about Ed Winters’ (Earthling Ed) presence this year during our Closing Ceremony. I’ve been following, reading, and have been generally greatly inspired by Ed’s advocacy and excellent ability to debate and navigate challenging topics while keeping calm and centered.

I’m also very excited for the session with Leah Garces and Brialle Ringer, Personal Transformation for Collective Liberation, where we will explore avenues of increased empowerment and strategies to elevate leadership from a place of wellness.

Why? Because it is all essential for movement progress! And I am particularly interested in navigating challenging conversations, collective liberation, and personal transformation.

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:31 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi Alexia! Taylor here, Grantee Day runs from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m on Thursday, May 16th. However, the appointments will depend on a variety of factors! Selected organizations will receive their appointment(s) in a few weeks. If selected, you'll know your appointment well in advance.

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1)

Thanks, Taylor! Hi Alexia! 

You will still want to arrive on time on Thursday morning to participate in the many Meet Up and Networking Sessions on Thursday. You can learn more about them here. 

Joaquín Triñanes @ 2024-04-03T17:05 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Could you tell us about a speaker or session from this conference that you're particularly excited about and why?

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1)

Hi, I’m Julia, AVA International’s Executive Director. I'm very excited about the fact that we are (mostly) setting up discussion panels instead of standalone keynotes this year. We also had great creative workshop submissions! 

Dan Cooper @ 2024-04-03T17:35 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

This will be my first time to D.C. are there any off-program activities happening before or after the Summit?

Alexia Dean @ 2024-04-03T17:27 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hello everyone! This will be my first time attending. What recommendations do you have for a first-time assistant? 
Also, could someone please confirm the starting time for Grantee Day? We'll be staying at a different hotel that day and want to ensure we arrive on time. Thank you! :)

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:32 (+1)

Hi Alexia, Julia here. This post might be helpful for you: https://forum.fastcommunity.org/posts/zJ6PkchvLyGvowkd4/how-do-you-benefit-most-from-attending-the-ava-summit?utm_campaign=post_share&utm_source=link 

We're looking forward to seeing you there!

Alexia Dean @ 2024-04-03T17:27 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hello everyone! This will be my first time attending. What recommendations do you have for a first-time assistant? 
Also, could someone please confirm the starting time for Grantee Day? We'll be staying at a different hotel that day and want to ensure we arrive on time. Thank you! :)

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:31 (+1)

Hi Alexia! Taylor here, Grantee Day runs from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m on Thursday, May 16th. However, the appointments will depend on a variety of factors! Selected organizations will receive their appointment(s) in a few weeks. If selected, you'll know your appointment well in advance.

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T16:45 (+3) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi, Che! I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. Our hotel block is SOLD OUT.....but fear not! We've secured 35 rooms at the Courtyard Marriott Pentagon South, just 1 KM/.6 Miles away from the AVA Hotel.

Hurry—these rooms will go fast! Book now to secure this rate ($199 + tax) before it's too late! The last day to book is April 29th, or until rooms sell out.

https://www.marriott.com/event-reservations/reservation-link.mi?id=1712095613513&key=GRP&app=resvlink


 

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:30 (+1)

Hi Che,

Amie here! In addition to this information, inevitably, this block will also sell out. Rooms tend to go super fast! When in doubt, you can always head to our DC event page to find the latest updates and news about the hotel (and everything else event-related!)

Also, please join us on our AVA International Slack channel for any/all upcoming wonders you may have! We are always there to provide information and help.

Dan Cooper @ 2024-04-03T17:30 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

When will the program be published?

Alexia Dean @ 2024-04-03T17:27 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hello everyone! This will be my first time attending. What recommendations do you have for a first-time assistant? 
Also, could someone please confirm the starting time for Grantee Day? We'll be staying at a different hotel that day and want to ensure we arrive on time. Thank you! :)

Franka Schoening @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi everyone. I was wondering when info will be shared for exhibitors regarding booth set up times, exhibit times, shipments to the hotel etc. 

 

Thanks so much for all your hard work. So excited for May already!

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:23 (+1)

Hi Franka, Amie here. In addition to the policy page and Amanda's provided information below, we also have this information (and so much more!) on our DC event FAQ page. Also, I invite you to connect with us on our Slack channel at any time for any/all questions you may have.

Join us on our AVA International Slack here: https://impactfulanimal.slack.com/archives/C059QEFMWUF

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:06 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi Vikram! Hi! I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. Our event is technically in Alexandria Virginia, just over the bridge from the Capital. We have partnered with Planted Society to bring their Plant Based Initiative to Alexandria! Keep your eyes out for news about our exciting restaurant offers! 

As far as where to stay, our hotel block is SOLD OUT.....but fear not! We've secured 35 rooms at the Courtyard Marriott Pentagon South, just 1 KM/.6 Miles away from the AVA Hotel.

Hurry—these rooms will go fast! Book now to secure this rate ($199 + tax) before it's too late! The last day to book is April 29th, or until rooms sell out.

See you in May! 

Vikram Singh @ 2024-04-03T17:23 (+1)

Thank you!

David van Beveren @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA team, fantastic to have you here with us today!

  • Are there any features on the WHOVA app that we should check out that is generally not used enough that you think would provide attendees value?
  • For those who can only go to 1 or 2 conferences a year: what would you say is the defining difference between AVA Summit conferences and other conferences in our movement?
  • Lastly, but most importantly, is there a reason the AVA Summit has made the decision to not include these snacks at every table?

Thanks! :)

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:22 (+1)

Hi David, we’ve actually gotten pretty good feedback on Whova in general from our attendees – most of them are using it to see who is coming and arrange 1:1 meetings with other attendees. 

The defining difference between AVA Events and other conferences is that our audience consists of dedicated individuals working or looking to work in the animal and vegan advocacy movement professionally. Our audience consists of >80% full-time advocates working for organizations (using all kinds of strategies) towards our shared goals. We are an “internal facing” event, not targeting the mainstream. The beauty of this — and that’s what most of our speakers tell us — is that we can truly speak as animal advocates, use the term vegan, and don’t "need to" wrap up our content for a more mainstream audience. 

Another thing that makes us unique is the amount of international attendees and speakers. We’ve had 48 nations represented at our last US Summit!

Gabriele Bernotaite @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA! I'm so excited to join everyone in D.C., thanks for doing this AMA!

When it comes to the conferences in Brazil and Vietnam, if you had to pick just one to attend, do you lean towards a favorite? Why?

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:18 (+1)

Hi Gabriele, this is Amie—what a great question! It is too hard, if not impossible, for me to choose just one to attend. Each event is unique to the respective culture and region, which is what makes our events so relevant and special. So, each event is equally my favorite for its own unique reasons and regional movement elevation potential.

David van Beveren @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA team, fantastic to have you here with us today!

  • Are there any features on the WHOVA app that we should check out that is generally not used enough that you think would provide attendees value?
  • For those who can only go to 1 or 2 conferences a year: what would you say is the defining difference between AVA Summit conferences and other conferences in our movement?
  • Lastly, but most importantly, is there a reason the AVA Summit has made the decision to not include these snacks at every table?

Thanks! :)

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:18 (+1)

Hi David, I’m sorry I got you addicted to Cheddalicious Plant Based Snacks. I’m glad to know you’ll be giving them away at the VH Exhibit Table at AVA D.C. 

James Morgan @ 2024-04-03T16:32 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

What are some little known facts, or behind the scenes info you can share about AVA that might surprise an average attendee?

Also, what are you as organisers most looking forward about the upcoming summit?

I can't wait to be there!

Amie Albright @ 2024-04-03T17:16 (+2)

Hi James, Amie here! One interesting piece of information that might surprise an average attendee is that our attendees come from all over the world; in our last US event alone (Los Angeles 2023), we had attendees from 48 countries! 

One of the things I am looking forward to most this year in AVA DC is coming together in community from around the world, and feeling rejuvenated and inspired from all of the incredible advocates working together in this space. It is sincerely one of my favorite aspects of our events! 

Can’t wait to see you in May!

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

If you booked with our link it is 48 hours before check in time! 

Che Green @ 2024-04-03T17:15 (+1)

Thank you again! Super helpful. 

Franka Schoening @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi everyone. I was wondering when info will be shared for exhibitors regarding booth set up times, exhibit times, shipments to the hotel etc. 

 

Thanks so much for all your hard work. So excited for May already!

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:14 (+1)

Hi Franka! 

As Taylor mentioned you can find those details and more on our AVA Policies Page

For ease, you can see all the details below: Exhibitor registration and load-in will begin at 2pm on Thursday, May 16th. Please make every effort to finish setting up by 6pm.

Exhibitor tear-down will begin at 2PM on the 19th.

While we encourage you to table any time from 8 - 5 PM on the 17-18th, and 8 - 2 PM on the 18th. peak exhibit hours will be during breaks and lunches. We ask that a staffer be at your table for those peak exhibit hours, with the others being optional.

Please follow the exact details below to ship your exhibit supplies. If you are sending swag, please make sure it is shipped and labeled separately per the instructions.

While we encourage you to table any time from 7 - 1:00 PM on the 17-19th, peak exhibit hours will be during breaks and lunches. We ask that a staffer be at your table for those peak exhibit hours, with the others being optional.

Registered exhibitors have access to all AVA Summit provided meals.

Please note nothing can be affixed to the hotel walls. If you have signage, please come prepared with pipes or easels.

Preferred Printer

Save time, shipping costs, and carbon emissions by using our preferred printer! The AVA Summit has teamed up with a local print shop, Digi Quick Print, to offer you a 10% discount on printing services, free delivery to the hotel, and a go-to plan for any last minute needs.

To qualify for this deal please contact both brian@digiqp.com and matt@digiqp.com and mention the AVA Summit.

Note: For simple jobs please give 2-5 business days notice. For larger and more complicated jobs please allow 7-10 business days. *If your project is for the Swag Bags please take special note of the instructions listed below.

Shipping to the hotel

Please keep note of your tracking number - if the hotel is looking for your package that is how they will find it

Attn: Sales/Convention Services

Guest Name - AVA Summit Hilton Alexandria Mark Center 5000 Seminary Rd Alexandria, VA 22311, United States

Due to the limited storage space, packages may be delivered to the Hotel three working days prior to the date of the function. Please note the below charges will reflect on your guest room or invoice. Please follow the below instructions to ensure your packages arrive in the correct place!

Incoming Packages are handled as follows: Express Envelopes are complementary and are held at the front desk. Packages/Boxes are charged at $6.00 each. Pallets are charged at $150.00 each. Cases/Crates are charged at $75.00 each.

Outgoing packages are handled as follows: Express Envelopes are complementary and can be sent from the front desk. Packages/Boxes are charged at $6.00 each. Pallets are charged at $150.00 each. Cases/Crates are charged at $75.00 each. Handling charges cannot be collected by the shipper’s account number, therefore please pay handling charges with one of the following methods: cash, check, or credit card.

There is a printer if you need to print off labels, but there is no shipping office at the hotel. We recommend bringing pre-paid labels if possible and scheduling a pick-up with your shipping provider.

Swag Shipping - The first 500 attendees will receive a swag bag at registration. If you are a Silver Sponsor or above or have otherwise arranged to include an item in our attendee Swag Bag, please make sure your swag items arrive by Tuesday, May 14th. We will build the bags on the 15th. Items received after the 14th are not guaranteed to be included in the bags.

Please keep note of your tracking number - if the hotel is looking for your package that is how they will find it

Attn: Sales/Convention Services

AVA SWAG - Your Org

Hilton Alexandria Mark Center

5000 Seminary Rd

Alexandria, VA 22311, United States

Exhibit Needs

If you purchased a WiFi/Power Upgrade, or are a Sponsor at any level, your A/V needs should be taken care of already! Additional requests may result in charges from the hotel.

→ Please contact Amanda@AVASummit.com for further hotel related questions


 

Franka Schoening @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi everyone. I was wondering when info will be shared for exhibitors regarding booth set up times, exhibit times, shipments to the hotel etc. 

 

Thanks so much for all your hard work. So excited for May already!

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:10 (+1)

Hi Franka, Taylor here! You can see all the exhibitor information and shipping information in our Policies page, and the Exhibitor Instruction emails being sent on April 5th and May 3rd!

https://www.avasummit.com/policies

Annika Quist @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Thanks so much for organizing! Might be getting ahead of myself, but - do you have tentative ideas for the 2025 conference location? 

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:09 (+1)

Hi Annika, I’m Julia, AVA International’s Executive Director. We do but we don’t want to give away too much just now :) Let’s say – if funding permits – we will be returning to the US West Coast, we’re looking at India for our next event in Asia, we’re considering a Spanish speaking country for Latin America, and… potentially adding a smaller conference with some partners on the African continent which we are really excited about! 

Joaquín Triñanes @ 2024-04-03T17:05 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Could you tell us about a speaker or session from this conference that you're particularly excited about and why?

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:08 (+2)

Hi Joaquín! Taylor here. I am so excited about all the new speakers coming this year who haven’t had a chance to speak yet! I am most excited about pattrice jones and our Uniting Voices series! 

Franka Schoening @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi everyone. I was wondering when info will be shared for exhibitors regarding booth set up times, exhibit times, shipments to the hotel etc. 

 

Thanks so much for all your hard work. So excited for May already!

David van Beveren @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA team, fantastic to have you here with us today!

  • Are there any features on the WHOVA app that we should check out that is generally not used enough that you think would provide attendees value?
  • For those who can only go to 1 or 2 conferences a year: what would you say is the defining difference between AVA Summit conferences and other conferences in our movement?
  • Lastly, but most importantly, is there a reason the AVA Summit has made the decision to not include these snacks at every table?

Thanks! :)

Che Green @ 2024-04-03T17:00 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Thanks! Booked, but Marriott is very unclear about the cancellation policy. 

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:07 (+2)

If you booked with our link it is 48 hours before check in time! 

Vikram Singh @ 2024-04-03T16:35 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Any recommendations on where to stay in DC that has nice vegan food nearby? :) 

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T17:06 (+1)

Hi Vikram! Hi! I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. Our event is technically in Alexandria Virginia, just over the bridge from the Capital. We have partnered with Planted Society to bring their Plant Based Initiative to Alexandria! Keep your eyes out for news about our exciting restaurant offers! 

As far as where to stay, our hotel block is SOLD OUT.....but fear not! We've secured 35 rooms at the Courtyard Marriott Pentagon South, just 1 KM/.6 Miles away from the AVA Hotel.

Hurry—these rooms will go fast! Book now to secure this rate ($199 + tax) before it's too late! The last day to book is April 29th, or until rooms sell out.

See you in May! 

Joaquín Triñanes @ 2024-04-03T17:05 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Could you tell us about a speaker or session from this conference that you're particularly excited about and why?

Gabriele Bernotaite @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA! I'm so excited to join everyone in D.C., thanks for doing this AMA!

When it comes to the conferences in Brazil and Vietnam, if you had to pick just one to attend, do you lean towards a favorite? Why?

Julia Reinelt @ 2024-04-03T17:04 (+1)

Hi, I’m Julia, AVA International’s Executive Director. If you don’t have any specific travel preferences or if your role is not directly related to any of the regions, I would recommend checking out AVA Latin America because we are trying out a new concept: A collaboration with the huge Sao Paulo VegFest this year! They had over 8,000 attendees in 2023 and tons of interesting exhibitors. (Shoutout to our partners at SVB!)

James Morgan @ 2024-04-03T16:32 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

What are some little known facts, or behind the scenes info you can share about AVA that might surprise an average attendee?

Also, what are you as organisers most looking forward about the upcoming summit?

I can't wait to be there!

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:04 (+1)

Hi James, Taylor here! I am most excited about getting to see everyone again and watching all of our hard work go out into the world!

Gabriele Bernotaite @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA! I'm so excited to join everyone in D.C., thanks for doing this AMA!

When it comes to the conferences in Brazil and Vietnam, if you had to pick just one to attend, do you lean towards a favorite? Why?

Taylor Waters @ 2024-04-03T17:04 (+1)

Hi Gabriele, Taylor here! That’s too hard to choose! I would lean towards the one which would add the most to my projects and roles. Both Brazil and Viet Nam offer incredible networking and learnings for folx working on projects in those regions. 

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T16:45 (+3) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi, Che! I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. Our hotel block is SOLD OUT.....but fear not! We've secured 35 rooms at the Courtyard Marriott Pentagon South, just 1 KM/.6 Miles away from the AVA Hotel.

Hurry—these rooms will go fast! Book now to secure this rate ($199 + tax) before it's too late! The last day to book is April 29th, or until rooms sell out.

https://www.marriott.com/event-reservations/reservation-link.mi?id=1712095613513&key=GRP&app=resvlink


 

Che Green @ 2024-04-03T17:00 (+1)

Thanks! Booked, but Marriott is very unclear about the cancellation policy. 

Gabriele Bernotaite @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Hi AVA! I'm so excited to join everyone in D.C., thanks for doing this AMA!

When it comes to the conferences in Brazil and Vietnam, if you had to pick just one to attend, do you lean towards a favorite? Why?

Annika Quist @ 2024-04-03T16:58 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Thanks so much for organizing! Might be getting ahead of myself, but - do you have tentative ideas for the 2025 conference location? 

Che Green @ 2024-04-03T16:36 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

The AVA hotel is fully booked for all dates, it seems. Will you be opening another block of rooms and/or do you have a list of nearby hotels you would recommend?

AmandaCramerEvents @ 2024-04-03T16:45 (+3)

Hi, Che! I’m Amanda Cramer, the Event Manager. Our hotel block is SOLD OUT.....but fear not! We've secured 35 rooms at the Courtyard Marriott Pentagon South, just 1 KM/.6 Miles away from the AVA Hotel.

Hurry—these rooms will go fast! Book now to secure this rate ($199 + tax) before it's too late! The last day to book is April 29th, or until rooms sell out.

https://www.marriott.com/event-reservations/reservation-link.mi?id=1712095613513&key=GRP&app=resvlink


 

Che Green @ 2024-04-03T16:36 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

The AVA hotel is fully booked for all dates, it seems. Will you be opening another block of rooms and/or do you have a list of nearby hotels you would recommend?

Vikram Singh @ 2024-04-03T16:35 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

Any recommendations on where to stay in DC that has nice vegan food nearby? :) 

James Morgan @ 2024-04-03T16:32 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're the organizers of The Animal & Vegan Advocacy (AVA) Summit, and we are excited about the Summit in DC this May 16-19, 2024. Ask us anything!

What are some little known facts, or behind the scenes info you can share about AVA that might surprise an average attendee?

Also, what are you as organisers most looking forward about the upcoming summit?

I can't wait to be there!



Comments on 2024-03-28

Sam Tucker @ 2024-02-12T10:08 (+2) in response to The Potential Impact of AI in Animal Advocacy & The Need For More Funding In This Space

Thank you for these great questions! 

I think the initiative that will be the most impactful is mass data collection as this is the one intervention that enables all other interventions in the AI space for animal advocacy and by focusing our first 6 months on extensive data collection and curation, we will lay the groundwork for all 3 of our planned interventions (training and deploying open-source AI systems free from speciesist bias, empowering animal-friendly organisations to integrate AI into their operations and helping AI labs and developers align their models with the interests of animals). 

Because all 3 interventions require this as a first step, we save considerable time and resources by choosing to start here.

Furthermore, by open-sourcing this dataset, we further mitigate against potential risks by allowing any individual or organisation to develop their own interventions using this data. This significantly increases the potential for impact, as this first step is not only laying the groundwork for our own interventions, but potentially for all future interventions at the intersection of AI and animal advocacy.

But in terms of ranking each of those three interventions that come after data collection, it primarily depends on the timeframe in which you evaluate impact, whether you prefer interventions that are lower risk to lower reward or higher risk to higher reward and whether these interventions happen together or in isolation. 

For example, helping animal organisations implement AI in their workflows is much more likely to be successful if we're helping them implement AI without speciesism and helping AI labs to reduce speciesism in their models will be much easier if we have already successfully done so with our own models.

Helping animal organisations with implementation is likely to have the greatest short term impact, whilst working with other AI labs may have the largest long term impact, but also a higher degree of risk.

As for the question about specific use case, I'm personally most excited about automated agents, chatbots and the intersection of generative and predictive AI. For example, we could have AI agents that monitor social media for misinformation from the animal industry and automatically respond to it with factual information, we could have LLMs that use real world social media analytics from animal organisations as their reward function (in other words, they would learn which kind of posts get the most reach, likes and comments and they would write more posts like that) and we could have AI-powered chatbots that personalise their responses to each individual based on what is most likely to resonate with them.

Regarding the technical questions about expected increase in performance and the difference between prompt engineering vs. fine-tuning, I'm currently in the middle of writing a literature review that addresses this question in more detail and I'd be more than happy to share it with you once I'm done to provide a more comprehensive answer, but in the meantime, I'm happy to share a few general thoughts on this question that explain why I believe the 10% increase in productivity estimate is highly conservative.

Prompt engineering techniques can work well to align LLMs for narrow use cases like creating vegan recipes (for example), but in agent-like systems (specifically externally facing ones that deal with the general public) the risk of the system becoming unaligned rises, as does that potential impact of that risk. I believe particularly as the year progresses this is going to be an increasingly important problem to solve as the AI industry as a whole is moving towards automated agents quite rapidly. There are also data and privacy concerns with the closed source models for animal organisations, many of which see this as an obstacle to implementing AI. Open source locally hosted models could potentially solve this issue.

Also, optimising for the correct reward function is something that will be very difficult to do with closed source models. For example, with enough data, we can train models that predict how different advocates rank different responses based on the type of advocacy they do, we can train models to predict how social media or blog posts will perform for different organisations etc. and we can use these as reward models to fine-tune models that are goal focused towards the needs of animal advocates. I believe as a result of this we will be able to create much more persuasive LLMs than we would through prompt engineering alone.

There's also a lot of interesting use cases for using smaller fine-tuned LLMs as tools, for example, we could create very hyper-specialised small models for something like grant-writing tailored to vegan grant-makers (using data from what grants do and don't get approved as the reward) and then have a larger LLM decide when to call that tool. The impact of something like a vegan-specific GPT would be much greater if it had access to a wide range of small fine-tuned models, prediction models and retrieval augmented generation, even if we don't succeed in creating a superior general vegan LLM (although I am very confident that we will be able to create that as well).

Regarding the question around influencing AI labs, the animal advocacy movement has a long history of successful corporate and legislative campaigns that we can learn from and apply within this space. One thing that stands out to me is that the most successful corporate advocacy campaigns tend to have a clear alternative provided by campaigners and often support in helping corporates implement that alternative. I believe for us to be successful in influencing AI labs, we will likely also require a clear alternative, in this case by building animal-aligned AI models, evaluations and benchmarks that we can use to help AI labs in aligning their models. 

lostinsauces @ 2024-03-28T13:34 (+1)

Hi Sam! I want to apologize for taking so long to respond. I'll try to be quicker in the future if there is more to discuss after my response here. I also really appreciate you taking the time to respond in such detail. Here are some poorly organized thoughts:

  1. I appreciate you outlining the specific use cases you have for AI in this space. I certainly like the idea of bots that automatically provide factual information. I'm not sure 100% automation will be possible without a good deal of regrettable or borderline false positives or hallucinations, but it could at least automate surfacing misleading information with high visibility. I think the social media use case makes a ton of sense, but it's less clear to me that this won't be solved by a private company.
  2. Thanks for clarifying the limitations of fine-tuning! I hadn't realized that. I'm still a little unsure about the feasibility of training your own models to be capable AI chatbots, though. How big of a non-speciesist corpus do you expect to be able to assemble, and how does it compare to the size and quality of the training data from foundation models? You might have found a way of amassing a ton of data, in which case, kudos. If not, however, I wonder if it would make more sense to focus on developing techniques to clean speciesist data out of corpuses, which could be used by the bigger AI labs. Overall, I'm still not entirely sold on the theory of change with AI powered chatbots, but I'm also not sure exactly what kind of world we're heading into. My sense is that people mostly change their habits/views out of self-interest or under influence from their close peers. I do think personalized messaging/ads could improve the quality of outreach efforts, but where do you get the prerequisite data on the individuals?
  3. I also like your point that advocacy is most impactful when you can point to specific solutions. My sense is that suggesting techniques for pruning their corpuses of speciesist data is more tractable than showing them presumably less capable models trained on a different dataset. This paper might also be inspirational.


Comments on 2024-03-27

Yasmin Ben Tzvi @ 2024-03-27T13:28 (+1) in response to Want to speak up for the animals? Become a NARD Organizer!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd3k7AJH6jLKc8WtLqrbtUeubvLt3-YX_TVNxqUnQVivs3zRQ/viewform



Comments on 2024-03-26

Max Broad @ 2024-03-26T21:50 (+1) in response to Washington State Prohibits Octopus Farming: A Major Victory for Animals

YAYYYYYYYYYYYY! This makes me so happy! I wonder what the legislators main motivators were for voting for this.



Comments on 2024-03-22

Aidan Kankyoku @ 2024-03-05T20:27 (+5) in response to Aidan Kankyoku's Quick takes

I just saw a video on instagram of someone basically sabotaging megatrawlers by dropping gigantic pieces of marble into the ocean to mess up their nets. People who know about fishing: does this seem like it could be effective or scalable? If so it seems like it could be massively cost-effective. 

Link to video: https://www.instagram.com/reel/C3QSQTdvDQh/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

saulius @ 2024-03-22T17:27 (+1)

You probably have heard of this argument, but I just want to point out that it's very unclear whether trawling decreases or increases animal suffering in the short term. It could decrease suffering by reducing wild animal numbers because wild animals suffer a lot. This consideration doesn't make me want to go and eat shrimp or support trawling, but I do think it's good to ask who would be the beneficiaries of such an intervention before pursuing it.



Comments on 2024-03-21

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-21T17:08 (+4) in response to Animal Welfare League 2023 Review

This is an excellent write-up of your work! Thank you for sharing it. And especially, thank you for all you do for animals in Ghana!



Comments on 2024-03-20

allisona @ 2024-03-20T20:58 (+1) in response to 25 million try vegan in Veganuary's 2024 campaign

Wow, this sounds like a great acheivement! Can I ask how you calculated the 25M estimate? I tried looking in the campaign report and didn't see additional info. I maybe found a couple of the Yougov surveys (UK and Germany)?



Comments on 2024-03-15

Husnain Khan @ 2024-03-15T05:54 (+1) in response to Nearly 400 Sodexo-Run Dining Halls Have Implemented Meaningful Plant-Based Nudges
  • In 2020, a farmer in Ohio found a colonial-era cannonball while metal detecting on his land. The cannonball was believed to be from the Battle of Fallen Timbers, which was fought in 1794. The discovery of the cannonball shed light on a significant historical event and helped to fill in gaps in our understanding of the past.

Using metal detectors in agriculture, as promoted by GoldXtra, ensures that the agriculture industry can yield safer, purer, and better-quality products. These tools are not just the treasures of history enthusiasts but have proven to be genuine assets in modern farming.



Comments on 2024-03-08

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-08T16:37 (+1)

Question: I received a Movement Grant last year, am I eligible to apply again?


Response: Yes! Provided the work you are applying for remains in scope (see the Movement Grants eligibility criteria here) previous grantees are welcome to apply for funding again this round. 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-08T16:37 (+1)

Question: I am curious whether you accept grant applications from organizations preferring to remain anonymous or not publicly acknowledged as grantees?

Response: You can apply and request to remain anonymous. If successfully awarded a grant, we would only publicly list the amount and that it was to an anonymous organization. 

There is no question in the application form asking if you would like to remain anonymous, but you can note “anonymous” in the preferred name field so we are aware of your preference. If awarded a grant, we ask for feedback on our announcement post providing another opportunity to request that your grant remain anonymous if you haven’t already made us aware. 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-08T16:36 (+1)

Question: I have previously applied for funding on Granti, is there any connection between this application and applications I have submitted for other funders?

Response: Granti is the grant management platform ACE is using for Round 8 of the Movement Grants program. A number of other funders in the animal advocacy space use Granti, so applicants may already be familiar with the platform. Although we are using the same platform, our grantmaking programs are separate, we cannot see any applications you have submitted to other funders, and likewise they cannot see the application you have submitted to ACE. 

This is our first time using Granti and we appreciate any feedback you have on how you have on your user experience. 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-08T15:15 (+1)

Question: We will be applying for funding to cover our general operational costs, how do you determine an end date for the grant period?

Response: If you apply for general support funding, we will award the grant for 12 months from the point at which the grant agreement is signed - this means your grant period is likely to be from June/July 2024  to June/July 2025. If you spend the grant before that period concludes, you are welcome to report on your grant earlier (there is a question in the application that invites you to provide a date to report earlier), but this is not required. 

You can find more information on the Process and Timeline here


 



Comments on 2024-03-07

Bernd Hack @ 2024-03-05T18:47 (+4) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

How effective is street activism that educates people about animal welfare in a cube-of-truth style? Are there more effective ways to help animals as a private person in your spare time, i.e. to help turn the population vegan?

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-07T21:18 (+1)

This is a great question, and the truth is we don’t really know! It can be tough to track the effects of cube-of-truth style activism because it’s hard to follow up with everyone who engages with activists in this capacity to see whether they change their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviour as a result. What’s more, even if someone does cite this form of activism as a key driver of their shift towards veganism it’s very challenging to verify whether that’s accurate. The movement needs much more high-quality animal advocacy research to be done to help us determine how effective different interventions are, especially vegan outreach efforts. In the absence of high-quality empirical evidence, at ACE we look at the theory of change behind the program and interventions that grant applicants submit to us for funding. If there’s a convincing theory of change that describes how you predict your intervention will cause a change in the people you engage with, we are more likely to consider funding your project. As a concrete example, last year we gave a grant to We The Free to support their street activism because we felt their theory of change was particularly compelling. That said, in general, we tend to favor activities that target institutions over individuals because they can typically engage many more people with the limited funds we have to disburse. 

In terms of the most effective ways to help animals as a private person, probably the most effective thing you can do is donate to effective animal charities or volunteer your time with them.

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T19:35 (+1)

Question: Will applying for a higher amount decrease the chances of getting funding? Or is it best to apply for the lowest possible amount needed to carry out the project?

Response: 

Requesting more in the first stage is unlikely to hurt your chances of being awarded a grant provided you sincerely believe that being awarded more will substantially improve the impact of your project—we might well agree! Conversely, if it appears that an applicant has excessively padded their budget with unnecessary line items, we would look unfavorably upon this. 

There is a question in the application form about breaking down your budget. This would be where we would note what is necessary for the project and what is nice to have. If you can also explain how the nice-to-have line items will further help animals, this will help us decide whether to fulfill the requested amount or offer partial funding. 

We have previously awarded partial funding where we think the organization can deliver the project with less funding, and disbursing those additional funds to another organization will benefit animals more. We do this because our program is highly funding-constrained compared to the number of quality applications we receive. 

Depending on the size of the grant being considered (if it is over $20,000), we will often follow up with the applicant to understand whether they would be able to deliver the project with partial funding. 
 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T19:33 (+1)

Question: A number of people have been in touch to ask whether Masters and PhD students research projects are within the scope of the Movements Grants program.

Response: The program is open to applicants undertaking research, so Masters and PhD students are eligible to apply for funding. Note that we typically award grants to research organizations, mid-stage career researchers, and research programs because their work is often more likely to have real-world outcomes for animals than Masters or PhD student's research projects. However, we don't want to discourage you from applying, and we strongly advise that in your application you include how the research will ultimately help animals. For example, will the findings of your research be used by animal advocacy organizations, governments or industry? How will you ensure the users of your research will see your work and adopt its findings?  This is needed so we can understand the potential impact of your work. 


Secondly, we are unable to award grants to individuals working outside of the U.S., please ensure your university or another organization can act as fiscal sponsor to receive a grant if awarded. 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T19:32 (+1)

Question: A few people have queried the eligibility of individuals working outside of an organization to receive a Movement Grant. 
 

Response: We are able to fund individuals working in the United States, although such a grant may be considered taxable income. Individuals working outside the U.S. are asked to collaborate with a fiscal sponsor. 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T18:02 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We also received some questions via email, which I thought would be helpful to share with you all. I will post them in this thread 👇🧵

Alfred Sihwa @ 2024-03-05T18:37 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Thanks Elaanor and ACE for grant making, do you consinder the number of organisations you have funded in a particular country as a cause for not funding all applicants?

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T17:57 (+1)

No, we don’t. We often fund multiple organizations in a single country. That said, reviewing a number of applications in a country can make it easier to compare the different interventions and often allows us to identify which interventions appear more promising. We ask applicants to provide their Theory of Change and their geographical, political, or cultural context so we can determine which projects in a given country are likely to be the most impactful.  

RachelM @ 2024-03-05T21:34 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Could you potentially fund general operating costs for an individual as opposed to an organization? I'm thinking salary for working on related but distinct research projects for a few months.

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T17:56 (+2)

Yes, individuals are eligible for our unrestricted general support grant. 

Bernd Hack @ 2024-03-05T18:48 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

For the year 2022, you have published an intervention chart (on docs.google.com). I can't find it anymore. Does it (or a 2023 version) still exist? There you have numerically evaluated different forms of action. For example, protests had a low priority, while investor outreach had a high priority.

Another question about this table: documentaries have a low priority. Most of the vegans I know have become vegan because of these these videos (e.g. Earthlings, Dominion). Why don't you find them more important than other actions (e.g. Investor outreach)

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-07T17:55 (+2)

Here is the 2023 version of the Intervention Relevant Scores

Regarding documentaries, it appears that a small number of documentaries are highly effective in convincing individuals to move towards a vegan diet. However, the vast majority of documentaries promoting animal welfare or veganism are not impactful. If we had a greater understanding of which documentaries would be as successful as Earthlings or Dominion, we would be much more likely to award documentary makers grants. Without this knowledge, we find that other interventions, such as investor outreach, are often a better use of our scarce funds. 

Thanks, Eleanor
 



Comments on 2024-03-06

Dydanimal @ 2024-03-05T16:49 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!
  1. Are you likely to provide funding for projects that involve supporting an organization of volunteers and lawyers, such as hiring full-time staff like lawyers or project coordinators, to expand the impact on animal welfare? If so, we would appreciate any recommendations you may have.
  2. We are aware of the restrictions of funding work that directly supports specific political candidates. Will the funding of a media campaing to persuade every candidate to include pro-animal proposal also be prohibited under this category?
Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-06T14:53 (+1)

Thank you for your questions! 

  1. At this stage it is hard for me to say how likely we are to award a grant for the work you describe because this depends on the number of applications we receive, the strength of those applications, and the amount of funding we have available. Whether we are likely to fund the project you describe depends on the jurisdictions you are working in, the number of animals that may be impacted by your work, and how well funded this type of work is. You can find more information on our priority areas on our Application Guidelines
  2. Yes, a campaign that targets all candidates/political parties is within scope of Movement Grants. In the application form please note the percent of funding dedicated to lobbying at the relevant question. 


Comments on 2024-03-05

RachelM @ 2024-03-05T21:34 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Could you potentially fund general operating costs for an individual as opposed to an organization? I'm thinking salary for working on related but distinct research projects for a few months.

Aidan Kankyoku @ 2024-03-05T20:27 (+5) in response to Aidan Kankyoku's Quick takes

I just saw a video on instagram of someone basically sabotaging megatrawlers by dropping gigantic pieces of marble into the ocean to mess up their nets. People who know about fishing: does this seem like it could be effective or scalable? If so it seems like it could be massively cost-effective. 

Link to video: https://www.instagram.com/reel/C3QSQTdvDQh/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

Rayen Antiman @ 2024-03-05T17:56 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi! I wanted to ask if there is a problem with funding more than one project from an organization.  if an organization has been previously funded, it is better to request funding for a specific project or general funding.

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T20:11 (+1)

This year we are asking applicants to either apply for a single project through our project-specific application or for general support. We are two weeks into the application process and we have already received over 200 applications! Which is amazing, but unfortunately we won’t have the capacity to assess multiple projects for each organization that applies. You will not be favored for applying for a single project over general support, or vice versa..

Bernd Hack @ 2024-03-05T18:48 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

For the year 2022, you have published an intervention chart (on docs.google.com). I can't find it anymore. Does it (or a 2023 version) still exist? There you have numerically evaluated different forms of action. For example, protests had a low priority, while investor outreach had a high priority.

Another question about this table: documentaries have a low priority. Most of the vegans I know have become vegan because of these these videos (e.g. Earthlings, Dominion). Why don't you find them more important than other actions (e.g. Investor outreach)

Bernd Hack @ 2024-03-05T18:47 (+4) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

How effective is street activism that educates people about animal welfare in a cube-of-truth style? Are there more effective ways to help animals as a private person in your spare time, i.e. to help turn the population vegan?

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T16:36 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

We don’t have a fixed number of grants we intend to award. This primarily depends on the total donations we receive for the program. In previous rounds, we have awarded between 35 and 52 grants per year, and we expect that the number of grants we award is unlikely to differ from this range. 

The minimum we will award an individual or organization is $5,000 USD, and this year we have removed the maximum amount we will award grantees. However, we are unlikely to award a high number of grants above the previous cap of $50,000 USD because the focus of Movement Grants remains on supporting earlier stage organizations and organizations working in countries with emerging animal advocacy movements, in both cases most of our applicants typically apply for less than $50,000. 

Last year we awarded a high number of partial grants where the Movement Grants Committee felt that the project could still be delivered with reduced funding and we could have a greater impact by awarding an additional grant to another organization. Based on feedback from our grantees about the challenges some have faced with partial funding we anticipate fulfilling the full amount of more grant requests this round, this is likely to result in fewer grants being awarded. That being said, we are still likely to award some partial grants. 

Thanks, Eleanor


 

Alfred Sihwa @ 2024-03-05T18:37 (+1)

Thanks Elaanor and ACE for grant making, do you consinder the number of organisations you have funded in a particular country as a cause for not funding all applicants?

Holly Baines @ 2024-03-05T18:15 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Update: Thanks so much for all the great questions! Also, thanks to David van Beveren and the FAST Forum for hosting this AMA for us. We’ll be signing off for now but feel free to continue to post your questions over the next couple of days—we'll keep an eye on this thread and try to respond.

As always, if you have any questions about our work, you can also reach out to us on email, TwitterInstagramFacebookLinkedIn, or via our website. Thank you and we look forward to receiving your applications!

If you’d like to support our Movement Grants program, all donations are currently being DOUBLED! Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to get your donation for animals DOUBLED.

GiovannaFAADA @ 2024-03-05T17:40 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

What should not be missing and what points should a good proposal include? Thank you again! 

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T18:06 (+2)

If you complete all of the mandatory fields in the application form, we will have sufficient information to make our grant decision. The notes in gray against some questions in the application form provide additional guidance on what we are assessing in each of those questions. In the second stage, we usually ask follow-up questions to applicants if there’s anything else we need to clarify. 

Thanks, Eleanor


 

David van Beveren @ 2024-03-05T15:53 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi ACE— thanks for joining us on the FAST Forum for our first AMA! 

On your movement grants FAQ: "Movement Grants also cast a wider net and may invest in more speculative or early-stage programs, while the Recommended Charity Fund offers donors more predictability." (emphasis mine)

What are some speculative or early stage programs that you've funded that were deemed successful investments later on, if any?

Thanks again!

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-05T18:05 (+4)

Thanks so much for this question. 

Many of the projects we fund via Movement Grants are happening at younger, smaller organizations, so there are two “early-stage” elements: early-stage organizations that might be in regions with a nascent animal advocacy movement, and early-stage projects that might be happening at early-stage organizations, or are happening at more established organizations that are expanding their programmatic work. 

Here are some examples of early-stage organizations we funded in 2023 that we think are doing impactful work in their global region. In these cases we’ve tended to give general operating funds rather than funding specific projects (though that’s not always the case):

We funded Samayu and A Just World to continue their systems-based approach to achieving positive animal welfare outcomes in the farming industry. They focus on both the aquaculture and poultry sectors, conducting regional research, advocating for improved policies, conducting outreach to farmers and communities, and running campaigns.

We provided general support for Good Growth to continue work in two areas to accelerate the growth of sustainable and ethical food systems in Asia. The first area is open-access market research to understand local stakeholders, farming systems, and consumer attitudes and identify locally relevant interventions. They launched a website that makes public datasets more accessible for advocates and funders, and this grant allowed them to scope out the demand for and potential impact of this project. The second area was community engagement and capacity-building to facilitate knowledge-sharing and build advocates’ research skills. This included conducting outreach by delivering workshops at animal advocacy events and producing content for their website.

We funded Animal Empathy Philippines to implement a capacity-building program for Filipino youth leaders. They work with rural youth, particularly those in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas, to co-create localized projects helping farmed animals in the country. They also plan to develop a program implementation toolkit and training for other organizations to roll out the same program in the future.

 

Here are some examples of early-stage projects we funded in 2023 at more established organizations:

We funded a project by Education for African Animal Welfare that aimed to influence the discourse on egg-laying hen welfare in Tanzania, promote cage-free farming, and consolidate and share information on welfare considerations in chicken farming. They worked with farmers and key stakeholders to assess the status and compile a report on battery cage farming in Tanzania through a nationwide survey, literature review, and stakeholder consultative meetings. They aimed to use this research to slow the intensification of poultry farming in the region.

We funded ARAF Plateau Dogon fora project that focused on raising awareness about the risks of battery cage farming of chickens in the Ségou region of Mali. They planned to mobilize youth and target the public at local events and schools across several municipalities. They also aimed to educate people on welfare issues and encourage people to not buy animals that have been raised in cages.

We gave a grant to AnimaNaturalis to take legal action against the federal government for failing to comply with its legal obligations on animal welfare in slaughterhouses. Their objective was to force authorities to comply with the provisions on animal welfare. They planned to focus on the federal government first and later move against state governments.

I hope these examples help you better understand the grant decisions we make in our Movement Grants program. If you have any additional questions or I haven’t answered you sufficiently please let me know!

Elisabeth

Stephan de Vries @ 2024-03-05T17:37 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi there. How closely do you work or team up with other grant-giving organizations like ProVeg, Thrive, the EA Animal Welfare Fund, or any others? I'm curious about the level of collaboration or partnership you have with these or similar programs. Thank you!

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T18:03 (+1)

We often ask other grantmaking organizations to share our application with organizations they think will be a good fit for Movement Grants. Occasionally, if we are aware an applicant has received a grant from another grantmaker, we may ask for feedback from the grantmaker. We also consider how likely the applicant will receive funding from other funders, although we don’t actively coordinate with them to determine this. 


Thanks, Eleanor

Samo @ 2024-03-05T16:19 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Dear ACE team! Thanks for doing this AMA.

At the bottom of the Grant Application you state: "Use this area to submit additional documents requested by the funder, outside of those normally required in each step."

Can the 'upload document' section be used to provide documents that describe the project in more detail? I am thinking here for example about a 'strategy' document that puts our cage-free legislative campaign in a wider context, and a 'roadmap' document that details the timeline of the campaign. Or is this section strictly meant for documents ACE requests during the application process?

Holly Baines @ 2024-03-05T17:58 (+3)

Hi Samo, thanks for your question! If you fill in all mandatory questions in the application form, that will be sufficient information to make our grantmaking decisions. You can include extra documents like the ones mentioned, but they won’t be the focus of our decision-making. In the second stage of the process, we usually ask follow-up questions to applicants if we need more clarification. Thanks, Holly

Rayen Antiman @ 2024-03-05T17:56 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi! I wanted to ask if there is a problem with funding more than one project from an organization.  if an organization has been previously funded, it is better to request funding for a specific project or general funding.

Gabriele Bernotaite @ 2024-03-05T16:35 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi! When trying to figure out if a salary is too high or too low, what kind of criteria or tools do you rely on? I'm curious about all the different aspects you consider, could you break down the various factors and elements that play into your evaluation process?

For example, how do you weigh industry standards, the cost of living in the relevant area, the role's responsibilities, and the experience required? Also, do you take into account the overall budget of the organization and how the salary fits within the pay structure for similar positions?

Thanks!

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-05T17:56 (+1)

Thanks for this question and for carefully considering staff salaries in your project budgets. 

We do take a look at staff salaries to get a sense of what we think is fair and realistic to achieve the goals of a project. However, we tend to err on the side of trusting charities to set salaries that are in line with their particular region. We are not experts in global nonprofit salaries and tend to do more of a high-level red flag check than a deep dive into proposed salary budgets. Some examples of past red flags that we’ve raised are if we see a salary that we think is unjustifiably low for the role and aims of a project, or if we see a salary line item that we are unsure is necessary or should perhaps be paid by an institution rather than ACE (e.g. we have sometimes questioned salary line items for university teaching staff, and whether such salary should be paid by the university rather than ACE). We rarely (if ever) receive applications that include salaries that seem unjustifiably high. In cases of red flags, we tend to ask direct follow-up questions to the applicant rather than making assumptions with no additional information. A salary line item would very rarely be the reason we reject a proposal.

Elisabeth
 

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-05T17:38 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Thanks for reaching out - these projects all sound interesting! Unfortunately, we can’t give guidance on which specific project to focus your application on via this AMA. But we can offer guidance on what areas we prioritize.

For Movement Grants we prioritize funding efforts that work towards institutional or systemic change rather than individual change, such as institutional, legal, or corporate outreach. Some of your projects look quite promising in that regard. For more information about what we are most interested in funding this round, check out our Application Guidelines and read through the questions. We’d recommend using these guidelines to choose which project to focus on for an application.

We do hope to see an application from you. Thanks for all your work for animals!

Elisabeth

Julia_VeganSocietyAustria @ 2024-03-05T17:53 (0)

Thank you Elisabeth! :-)

Altamush Saeed @ 2024-03-05T16:21 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi, ACE, Thank you so much for this AMA.                                                                                                          I work on Animal rights in Pakistan. I practice animal law and teach animal law as well in Pakistan. I  am representing three different organizations here and wanted to essentially pitch one project on behalf of each of them.                                                                                                                                         1. World Moot on International Law and Animal Rights: The WMILAR is the 1st world moot(Animal law competition working on bringing together the fragmented development of animal law from across the globe by conducting mooting competitions and moot training courses from experts. The moot problem which is the fictitious legal problem law students will argue on from across the world includes a problem on farm animal rights as well. This is a legal competition that aims to create animal law globally. Would this be a project ACE would consider covering?                                             2. Environmental and Animal Rights Consultants LLP Pakistan, EARC is Pakistan's 1st animal law firm. We are working on quite a few high-profile animal rights cases in the courts and developing policies. For farm animals, we are conducting some on-ground research so we can lay a map out of what the situation looks like in Pakistan. We also want to conduct education programs at the school level and I have built a curriculum for it.. We also want to provide free legal aid to animal rescuers in Pakistan.                                                                                                                                                                      3. Charity Doings Foundation Pakistan. We run Pakistan's 1st Disaster Zone Farm Animal Shelter and are looking for funding to sustain the project. We treat 400-600 farm animals every month and without a basic infrastructure, advocating for farm animals is incredibly hard.                                    Would ACE consider covering any of these initiatives?    I know 2 of these are legal initiatives and the last one is welfare but they have a farm animal angle and I wanted some advice on how to put forth a better application because this will help us create a proper animal rights movement in Pakistan.   Most of our work so far, for the last few years has been completely pro-bono as we haven't been able to get grants. To make these initiatives more sustainable, I feel the ACE grant would be monumental. Do we have any chance? Kindly, Altamush Saeed 

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-05T17:41 (+1)

Thanks for your question and for your hard work for animals!

For more information about what we are most interested in funding this round, please check out our Application Guidelines and read through the questions. We’d recommend using these guidelines to choose which project to focus on for an application.

We will not typically consider funding direct animal care, including the provision of funds to sustain animal care for farmed animal sanctuaries. It is highly unlikely that we’d fund project 3.  

For the first two legal projects, you’d need to be clear in your application about how your efforts serve to help animals. We’re interested in the theory of change of specific projects, and our aim is to prioritize those projects that have the highest chance of reducing the greatest amount of suffering for the most animals. We will prioritize efforts that work towards institutional or systemic change rather than individual change, such as institutional, legal, or corporate outreach.

Elisabeth

GiovannaFAADA @ 2024-03-05T17:40 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

What should not be missing and what points should a good proposal include? Thank you again! 

Julia_VeganSocietyAustria @ 2024-03-05T15:57 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi everyone, thank you so much for offering this opportunity! Our organization (Vegan Society Austria) works on 3 projects that I would like to ask if they can be considered for funding. Here a brief description of them:

1st project: DGI - Dietary Guideline Initiative. Two of our employees are working on this project and the aim is to change the official dietary recommendations for Austria. We have already achieved success with it and our employees are currently working on changing the nutrition plate and the food pyramid. We would need more money to gain a greater presence in the professional organisations for nutrition and to make vegan nutrition more present.

2nd project: Vegucation. The demand for purely plant-based dishes is increasing in the catering industry. This demand must be met with professional expertise in plant-based cuisine. This is why Vegucation was created. It is a multilateral project that combines expertise and education to offer people different paths to purely plant-based cookery training. It’s the only programme in the world where there is a cooperation with universities; 50 vocational schools in Austria are taking part. Our idea is to pass this successful concept on to other countries, as we see great potential and want to do more. We could imagine internationalising it.

3rd project: Veganuary. We organised the Veganuary campaign in Austria (with the help of Veganuary International) - media wise it was very successful (we had over 70 clippings) and all the major food retailers participated. (If you want to know more about the success of Veganuary in Austria, I can send you the End of Campaign Report).

Are there any chances that we can get a funding for one of our projects? Thank you so much!

Elisabeth Ormandy @ 2024-03-05T17:38 (+1)

Thanks for reaching out - these projects all sound interesting! Unfortunately, we can’t give guidance on which specific project to focus your application on via this AMA. But we can offer guidance on what areas we prioritize.

For Movement Grants we prioritize funding efforts that work towards institutional or systemic change rather than individual change, such as institutional, legal, or corporate outreach. Some of your projects look quite promising in that regard. For more information about what we are most interested in funding this round, check out our Application Guidelines and read through the questions. We’d recommend using these guidelines to choose which project to focus on for an application.

We do hope to see an application from you. Thanks for all your work for animals!

Elisabeth

Stephan de Vries @ 2024-03-05T17:37 (+1) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hi there. How closely do you work or team up with other grant-giving organizations like ProVeg, Thrive, the EA Animal Welfare Fund, or any others? I'm curious about the level of collaboration or partnership you have with these or similar programs. Thank you!

Thomas_Hecquet @ 2024-03-05T16:47 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Dear ACE,
thanks for this AMA and the movement grants. I am grateful for your choice of supporting organisations developing and testing new interventions.
May I suppose that it includes efforts for a better political representation of animals and/or against regulatory capture?
Do you also support (running) programs or only campaigns (or other projects with a certain closing date)?
Thanks again
Thomas

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T17:34 (+2)

Hi Thomas, thank you for your questions. 

Yes, efforts for a better political representation of animals and/or against regulatory capture are eligible for a Movement Grant. Please note what percent of the work is lobbying in your application. 

For the purposes of our project specific vs general support applications, we define a project as a discrete area of work within an organization. This means the grant awarded will be restricted to the work described in the application. Compared with the general support grant, where the grant agreement will allow for the organization to spend the grant at their discretion but we assess the applicant based on all areas of work in their organization. 

If you are applying for a specific area of work using our project specific application, but there is no end date or obvious milestone that will serve as an end date, I recommend setting the end date as June 2025, which will be one year from when a grant is awarded. 


Thanks, Eleanor

GiovannaFAADA @ 2024-03-05T16:00 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hello, and thank you very much for organizing this! Our project includes studying the available literature and research on a very underrepresented group of animals in order to develop informative material for the movement, carrying out a public awareness campaign, drafting a charter for best practices, and planning a strategy for future legal and corporate intervention. I'm not sure which of the interventions described in your menu best describes our action. Could you please help?"

Eleanor McAree @ 2024-03-05T17:21 (+2)

Based on the description of your work it appears that you will be looking for a general support grant as you are requesting funding for many projects. In our general support application form we ask applicants to provide up to two intervention areas. We assess applications for general support on what organizations spend most of their time and resources on (ideally over 75%). This is so we evaluate your organization fairly and don't put excessive weight on smaller projects. We recommend against including information about projects that require less than 25% of your organization's time and resources. You describe a number of intervention areas in your message including: research, corporate outreach, and public awareness campaigning. I recommend looking through our Menu of Interventions page and deciding which most fit the description of your work.

Please note, the Menu of Interventions is not an exhaustive list of intervention types. Once we have concluded this Movements Grants round we will revisit the completeness of our Menu of Interventions and decide whether we need to update our categories. 


Thanks, Eleanor

Nathalie Gil - Sea Shepherd Brasil @ 2024-03-05T16:43 (+2) in response to Hi FAST! We're from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) and we recently opened applications for our 2024 Movement Grants! Ask us Anything!

Hello Holly, thanks for organizing this! Considering ACE is open to projects that address wild animal suffering in neglected areas, would by any chance campaigns/ advocacy efforts focused on:

  • Eliminating damaging industrial fishing (wild animal suffering in extremely high quantities)
  • Eliminating shark fishing and shark commercialization in Brazil (the country which consumes sharks the most in the world)
  • Supporting law enforcement efforts to ensure protection of wild animals (manatees, dolphins)
  • Removal of ghost nets to protect wildlife
  • Creation of 'no take' fully protected marine zones

 

Are any of the above considered by ACE?

Holly Baines @ 2024-03-05T17:13 (+2)

Hi Nathalie, thanks so much for your question and for listing these very important issues! At ACE, we prioritize animals that suffer in the largest quantities (such as fishes) and projects tackling the problem that causes the most suffering (such as industrial fishing and aquaculture). So, out of the list above, we would most likely fund a project on “Eliminating damaging industrial fishing.” Thanks, Holly