Vegetarian leader

Copyright Keith Kenney, 2011

Susanna Melo writes about an old friend.

Forty years ago, neither Marly Winkler (center) nor I (left) would have ever imagined our futures.  We would not have guessed either that it would take 40 years for us to get together again, and that our meeting would be in Florianopolis, Santa Catarina. Life has its twists and turns, and it is great when friends reunite after such a long period of time!

How did we find each other?  Well, while I was in Tbilisi, Georgia, I had some time on my hands, so I decided to Google friends from my teenage years in Passo Fundo, Rio Grande do Sul.  I was surprised to find Marly on YouTube being interviewed at the Copenhagen Climate Conference in Denmark, where she talked about the preservation of the Amazon rainforest. I have come to learn that Marly is President of The Vegetarian Society of Brazil and that she has just become the first Latin American President of the International Vegetarian Union, which has been in existence for 103 years. She is also the author or translator of many vegetarian publications.

Marly’s biggest accomplishment for 2012 is the launching of the campaign, “Segunda Sem Carne,” (Mondays Without Meat) in the city of Sao Paulo (20 million inhabitants).  The city’s school system has adopted the idea of no meat on Mondays. Way to go, Marly!