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Open the Cages Alliance is a nonprofit organization that coordinates animal advocacy events in Baltimore, MD and surrounding areas. As a grassrooots group, we have been organizing since 2003. In 2011, we incorporated as Open the Cages Alliance.  We are now comprised of three volunteer directors, plus additional local volunteers. 

Our organization evolved out of anti-globalization organizing in the Towson, MD area in 2003, and primarily coordinated anti-vivisection and fur protests. In 2007, we began our frequent vegan outreach and leafleting events which continue to this day, and began to organize demonstrations for animals used by the rodeo and foie gras industries, in addition to fur and vivisection. We also worked closely with organizations in upstate New York on the Wegmans Cruelty campaign from 2006-2008. In 2009, passionate new organizers merged with longtime local event coordinators, and in 2010 we began organizing in both Baltimore and Washington, DC as Open the Cages Alliance (OTCA).

Open the Cages Alliance now takes a fully vegan approach to animal advocacy, rather than organizing for reforms or banning specialty products (such as foie gras). In 2011, inspired by Peace Advocacy Network's Vegan Pledge Program in Philadelphia, we coordinated the Baltimore Vegan Pledge Program, a free educational program in which 30 people pledged to be vegan for one month, with the support of a personal vegan mentor, free weekly educational sessions and materials, and supportive social events.

Our annual Vegan Living Program, a revised version of the Baltimore Vegan Pledge Program, is an educational program for those who want to try living vegan - for a day, a month, or a lifetime...or if you're just curious!  The VLP consists of weekly classes/discussions in the Baltimore area, supplemented with social gatherings and field trips, for the purpose of learning the how-tos of vegan living. We cover topics such as nutrition, cooking and meal-planning, shopping, eating out or with family, and lots more!  Participants may take part in just a class or two, or pledge to live vegan for a month with the support of a one-on-one Vegan Coach and the Vegan Living Program classes.

We continue to hold frequent outreach events in Baltimore, such as leafleting and feed-ins, and organized our second annual Vegtoberfest on October, 2012 at Riverside Park in Baltimore. Vegtoberfest is a celebration of vegan living with dozens of exhibitors and vendors, guest speakers, musical performances, children's activities, a vegan chili cook-off and fun!

All of our events are posted on our website, Facebook and Twitter page, and sent to our email contact list. We hope to see you soon!

Until All Are Free,

Open the Cages Alliance
Allie Cornell, Erin Marcus, and Robin Helfritch (Directors)

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