FAQ

What is Meat Free Week?

Meat Free Week (1-8 August 2016) is an annual campaign about making the choice to eat less meat, care more and feel good.

You sign up for the challenge of giving up meat for seven days and raise money via sponsorship. Participants have the option to raised funds to support Bowel Cancer Australia’s vital bowel cancer prevention programs or elect to have the funds they raise reinvested back into the Meat Free Week campaign, to support its continuation and expansion.

Who is behind Meat Free Week?

With a shared passion for animal welfare, Meat Free Week was founded by Australians, Lainie Bracher and Melissa Hobbs, who agreed it was time to stop talking and take action. In 2013 Meat Free Week Australia became a reality, and expanded to include Meat Free Week UK in 2015. A simple idea that could create positive change – a campaign that would get people thinking and talking about meat consumption and production. 

As proud health partner of Meat Free Week since 2014, Bowel Cancer Australia is pleased to continue supporting this dynamic awareness and fundraising campaign that motivates action.  Read more about how it all started here.

Why Bowel Cancer Australia?

Bowel Cancer Australia is the leading community-funded charity dedicated to helping to save lives and to improving the health and wellbeing of people living with bowel cancer.

It is estimated that changes to diet and physical activity could reduce the incidence of bowel cancer by up to 75 per cent. There is also convincing evidence that a high consumption of red meat and processed meat are causes for bowel cancer.

Going meat free for seven days for Meat Free Week is a great way to get Aussies thinking about the amount of meat they eat, and cutting down to help reduce their bowel cancer risk.

Is Meat Free Week trying to convert me to being vegetarian?

No, not at all. Going meat free for one week creates a great opportunity to get people thinking about how much meat they eat and the impact eating too much meat may have.  With education, awareness and the information to make informed choices, the goal is that for the other 51 weeks of the year meat-eaters will consider portion sizes when including meat as part of a balanced diet.

Why sign up and fundraise for Meat Free Week Australia?

Signing up and fundraising through Meat Free Week provides a great opportunity to get you thinking about how much meat you eat and the impact eating too much meat may have. You also have the opportunity to talk to people about what you’re doing and why. This is one of the most powerful ways to help create change.

Participants of Meat Free Week can help make a real difference by raising funds to support Bowel Cancer Australia’s critical bowel cancer prevention programs or elect to have the funds they raise reinvested back into the Meat Free Week campaign, to support its continuation and expansion.

Why sign up and raise awareness for Meat Free Week United Kingdom?

Signing up and raising awareness through Meat Free Week provides a great opportunity to get you thinking about how much meat you eat and the impact eating too much meat may have. You also have the opportunity to talk to people about what you're doing and why. This is one of the most powerful ways to help create change.

The 2016 Meat Free Week campaign is all about raising much needed awareness. If you woudl like to include a charitable element into your Meat Free Week, you may like to consider celebrating the completion of your Meat Free Week challenge by making a donation to one of the previous Meat Free Week UK charities: Beating Bowel Cancer, World Land Trust or Compassion in World Farming.

How are the funds allocated?

When you sign up for the Meat Free Week challenge, you can nominate which of Bowel Cancer Australia’s programs you would like to support (1) the charity’s critical bowel cancer prevention programs to help save lives, or (2) contribute directly to the continuation of the Meat Free Week campaign to ensure its ongoing success. 

Will the challenge be hard?

Well that depends on how much meat you eat. For those of you who love your meat and eat a lot of it, then yes the week may prove challenging. But for most, the week will be rewarding and informative. And if you're concerned about what to eat, we have you covered! Many of Australia’s leading chefs and foodies have kindly donated some of their best meat free recipes which are available on the Recipes section.

What if I can’t go a whole week without meat?

You can purchase an Eat Meat Pass (or ask someone to purchase it for you), by making a domation on your online fundraising page. Alternatively, you can sign up to participate for a Meat Free Week-end during Meat Free Week, 6-7 August 2016.

How do I take part?

It’s easy. Sign up and be sure to fill out your personal profile page and set yourself a fundraising goal. You’ll be provided with a unique fundraising page URL that you can share with all your family and friends, encouraging them to make a donation in support of your Meat Free Week efforts. You’ll find lots of yummy meat-free recipes on this website to help get you started. And make sure you use our tools to help you spread the word.

What if I don’t reach my fundraising goal?

That’s fine. Every little bit counts, so just try your best, feel good about the Challenge and keep motivated.

What if I’m already living meat free?

There's lots of ways to get involved. You can recruit some meat eating friends to sign up for the challenge, host a Meat Free Week dinner or fundraiser at home or work, or donate to the cause. Here are some more ideas on how to support Meat Free Week.

Are donations and sponsorships tax deductible?

Bowel Cancer Australia is registered with the Australian Taxation Office as an Income Tax Exempt Charity and endorsed as a Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR). All donations over $2 are tax deductible.

Does Bowel Cancer Australia undertake medical research involving animals?

Bowel Cancer Australia does not itself undertake any medical research, including laboratory research involving animals.  The charity provides research grants to external organisations, such as research centres, universities and hospitals, that undertake research in the area of bowel cancer.

To date and from Bowel Cancer Australia’s best knowledge the charity has not provided a research grant to an organisation that has used those funds to undertake laboratory research involving animals.

Previously funded bowel cancer research has included behavioural projects that look at consumer attitudes, patient experiences and health professional training, as well as medical research involving human subjects.

Should Bowel Cancer Australia receive a future funding application for research involving animals, the application would be carefully reviewed by the charity’s Medical Advisory Board and any projects involving animals would need to have been approved by a formally constituted animal ethics committee before being considered.

To date, funds raised through Meat Free Week have assisted the charity to expand its bowel cancer prevention programs - providing practical resources and educating the community about steps they can take to help reduce their bowel cancer risk, including a healthy Diet and Lifestyle.