Changemakers | Mon Roca
How did we get to know Mon?
We actually came across Mon Roca’s Instagram channel @vlove.no also known as Imperfectly Vegan and instantly fell in love with the content. We started to engage with each others content and we though that this was a voice that definitively deserved more spotlight. Here we are, sharing this interview with you! Get to know Mon, we bet you’re gonna love her as much as we do!
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’m Mon (26), born and raised in Barcelona and, as I like to say, Norwegian at heart. I came to Oslo for the first time in 2015 as an exchange student and from the very beginning I fell in love with the country, the culture, the nature and the lifestyle here. After finishing my studies I moved to Oslo to settle down and it’s been two years since then.
What passions drives you forward in life?
The answer is simple: animals. I’ve lived with 12 different rescued dogs since I was born and that gave me the chance to bond with them, take care of them, learn their unique personalities and understand that they have feelings just as we do. When I turned 18 I went vegan, ethical vegan as I like to call it, and my only regret is not making the connection earlier!
What drives me forward is knowing that I’m being a part of a social change. Some days I lose faith in humanity, not gonna lie, but most days I can notice people in my environment taking steps towards a more respectful lifestyle, and that’s priceless. We have the power to influence those around us just by being ourselves, and without realizing it we are planting seeds in people who, sooner or later, will be more open-minded to rethink their beliefs.
As an example of how things slowly change, in my family we went from bringing my mom and I our own vegan food for Christmas to my aunt’s, to start hosting vegan Christmas at home. It has taken years, but now celebrating this holiday with vegan food it’s the new normal. We all are powerful sources of change and inspiration, so don’t you dare to hide who you are!
How did you end up doing what you do today?
My background is in Criminology and I have a master in Animal Ethics, so since I was a student I knew I’d use my passion, my education and my personal experience to encourage a vegan lifestyle and raise awareness about the daily choices we make. I’ve tried different types of activism throughout these years and I believe the one I’m best at is at creating content on social media that makes people reflect. On Instagram I make quizzes, recommend documentaries, share good news, and make posts that educate and inspire vegans and non-vegans, all without showing sensitive content. The more pages with different approaches the better!
Last December I launched a website whose goal is to make vegan lifestyle easy. There you will find Norwegian ethical brands and information and resources to learn more about clothing, cosmetics, and random daily products. There are plenty of amazing sources about vegan food out there where you can find recipes, tips, and so on, but I was missing a website where you could learn about veganism as a lifestyle, going beyond food. That’s actually how this idea started and why there is no food related information on the website.
Finally we have recently released an e-Book called “Journey towards Veganism, a 21-day guided journal”. It is written together with Simona from @thealteranivepalate and Emma @emmavcoaching. The book is an interactive guide to introduce you into veganism. Its design is journal-inspired, and what makes this book special is that it focuses on you and your mental wellbeing. We usually go vegan for external reasons (animals, environment) and we forget about ourselves. The book seeks to support you in your transition while asking you questions to get to know yourself better.
What are your best tips for a sustainable lifestyle?
I’m still learning how to live more sustainably in a consumerist society, but I believe the essence is to become more minimalist and to buy only what you really need. To buy second-hand and to choose plastic-free when possible.
One of the tips that worked best for me was analyzing my waste. What products do I use the most that aren’t recyclable? Is there a product I consume very often that I could make myself? For example, in my case I realised that I used to buy products that came in plastic that I could actually make myself. Like hummus. By creating a sustainable alternative to a product that I use very often I’m reducing my waste. That’s good for the planet, my pocket, and my health because it’s more natural.
I’m far from perfect and sometimes I go for what is more convenient, but I believe that’s okay too. I understand this is a journey where I will get better and learn more as I go. Don’t let perfectionism stop you from trying. Excellence comes with practice!
Where do you find inspiration?
In every person I meet. I couldn’t say only one name. No matter what they do or who they are, I always find something that I can learn from them. People taking action, fighting for a cause they believe in, and doing what they are passionate about. People that show up as they are, that have flaws and yet keep going. They encourage me to be myself, to challenge my beliefs, to dream big and dare to do more.
If you could give one piece of advice to the readers, what would it be?
Once I read this quote and it stuck with me since then:
The most important relationship is the one you have with yourself.
My advice is get to know yourself. You need to know who you are and what you want in order to live your best. I’m more useful in my animal activism when I’m aware of my strengths and my flaws. When I know what I like to do and what I don’t. When I know how to deal with my fears, thoughts, stress and life in general.
I know for some it’s a struggle to spend time alone just thinking or journaling. But I encourage everyone to embrace it, to find a thoughtful or creative activity they can do alone. To spend quality time with themselves.
What do you think is lacking in our communities and commercial markets today?
Awareness. We as consumers play a huge role and I don’t think we are aware enough of how our actions impact other people’s lives, animals and the planet. We want something, we get it. That’s it. There are no second thoughts about who made that item, or where this fabric comes from, or how many times will I use this. Wanting to know more is key to making better choices and helping create a fairer world.
Any last thoughts?
Thank you so much for this lovely chat. I think Make a Momentum is doing such a great job in building and inspiring the vegan community in Norway!
Did you feel as inspired as we did when getting to know more about Mon? We have amazing news for you guys! Mon is now a part of the co creator team at Make a momentum. This means more inspirational and helpful posts on the blog! Yeah! We’re very grateful and excited! So stay tuned for more!
Looking for more tools and inspiration on awareness and lifestyle? Visit our Tool Box section!