Animal World
Shining World Compassion Award: Silvana Andrade & the News Agency of Animal Rights (ANDA) in Brazil      
Today’s Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants will be presented in Portuguese, with subtitles in Arabic, Aulacese (Vietnamese), Chinese, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai.

Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.

To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us.

Our program today highlights the noble-spirited works of Brazilian vegan journalist and animal protection advocate Silvana Andrade and the non-profit organization she founded in 2008, ANDA or the News Agency of Animal Rights. ANDA’s staff is made up of volunteers including writers, nutritionists, teachers, and journalists. At the group’s website, 40 columnists contribute articles and interviews, with approximately 500,000 visitors from 65 countries accessing the site each month.

ANDA is the first news agency of animal rights in Latin America. I, with the help of some journalists and also professionals from other areas, professionals who have postdoctoral, doctor and masters’ degrees, we gather to provide the press and also society with information about what really happens to the animals. Before the foundation, the creation, the launching of ANDA on the Internet, in general, the press would cover animal-related news more like the commercialization of the "pet" world, clothes, the birth of animals in zoos or animal attacks on humans.

This still, of course, gets press coverage, but today the press has started to address more the issue of disrespect, of cruelty committed against animals. So, ANDA’s purpose is to inform to transform; provide information to the journalists, opinion-makers and society, so that from there, they are aware and can also act on behalf of the animals.

What prompted Silvana Andrade to start ANDA? She now explains.

I lived in another state. I was in Brasilia; it is the Brazilian capital. The National Congress was discussing Arouca´s Law; a law that regulates animal experimentation in Brazil. It was unfortunately approved. Several reports appeared in the press and none of them showed the other side. I called a journalist and I asked him, “Why are not you listening to the other side?” And he said, “But is there another side?” I said, “Sure, the animals’ side!”

So, noting the absolute misinformation with respect to animals, I got the idea to establish this NGO (non-governmental organization), to create this NGO, just to support them. Today we have 40 columnists from various fields. Ninety-five percent of our staff are all volunteers; even today, we work without any resources. Ninety-five percent of our staff are vegan, and five percent vegetarians. And we are informing the press and also society as to new insights regarding issues related to the animal universe.

ANDA has many dedicated followers belonging to online social networks who respond quickly when the news agency publishes articles regarding animal abuse.

We report facts, in general the cruelty or bad behavior of the companies in relation to animals rights. They mobilize by sending e-mails or demonstrating in the streets, demanding that animals have rights. And we have achieved many things, effectively we have results in relation to Bill 4548 that decriminalizes violence against animals.

This bill is unconstitutional, but is always placed on the agenda to vote in the Congress. We reported (on it) three times and the defenders, animal rights supporters mobilized and the bill is now removed from Congress's list. This is very good which shows that every day more people are having more knowledge and awareness and acting in defense of animal rights.

Beyond our work through the site, we have published one book. We also promote cultural and sports activities. ANDA is always very aligned with ethical art because cruelty is a very difficult matter to work with. And we have promotional shows; we promoted one show with great Brazilian artists last year. We also did one big event in "Casa das Caldeiras."

We occupied a 3,000 square meter space, having several artistic activities for adults and children, always incorporating the idea of veganism in our actions. We also promoted the First Animal Rights Bike Ride, here in São Paulo. And we plan to continue with all this. We will launch, at the end of September, Shannon Keith’s second film, “Skin Trade,” at the CINESESC (cinema house). We intend to continue working. Our proposal is to make an animal rights movie and we’ll try to show that it is possible for all sectors of society to have a compassionate, ethical vision in relation to animals.

For the organization’s commitment and determination to bettering the lives and defending the rights of animals, Supreme Master Ching Hai honored the News Agency of Animal Rights with the Shining World Compassion Award.

On February 28 this year (2011). . . I had very sad news about the NGO, because... beyond the financial difficulties, an important voluntary contributor said that she would no longer participate. It was almost like, we cannot continue anymore. And I cried a lot, with a deep sadness and saying, "My God, how do we continue?" And hours later, I got a message that I had been given an award, our NGO.

And when I saw the (news) piece (being aired on Supreme Master TV), I was so happy just to see, just to be on TV that I had not noticed the prize. And then after, I was informed. And I started to cry again. I fell in tears, but such a great emotional happiness that I had not felt in so long.

And I really felt that God through the Supreme Master was telling me that everything would be all right and that I had to continue. And today, when we go through difficult moments, I remember that I have a responsibility to continue due to the granting of this award. It was one of the most beautiful and most rewarding days of my career, of my almost 50 years and also in ANDA. The most beautiful day!

On Supreme Master Ching Hai’s behalf, our local Association members presented Ms. Andrade with the lovely crystal Award plaque along with a number of Supreme Master Ching Hai’s DVDs and books including the #1 international bestsellers, “The Dogs In My Life,” “The Birds In My Life,” and “The Noble Wilds,” as well as “From Crisis to Peace” and “The Love of Centuries.” Supreme Master Ching Hai also contributed US$10,000 to support ANDA’s noble work. The following is an excerpt from Supreme Master Ching Hai’s caring letter to Silvana Andrade and ANDA.

This Award is presented in recognition of the Agency’s brilliant achievements in informing the world of the value of kindness to all beings, and for the dedication and altruism of members and contributors. Together you are creating the long awaited paradise that Earth was always meant to be. Realizing that people cannot respond to what they do not know, the Agency has a prime focus of global dissemination of information about the suffering and injustice faced by animals today. It also shares the very important fact that veganism is the most effective way to help the animals, the planet and human health.

For offering your time, intellect, nobility and energy to assist animals in need, for the selflessness and purity of your goals, for courageously speaking for those who cannot, and for the loving kindness in all you do, we hereby applaud and celebrate the compassionate deeds of News Agency of Animal Rights, and all its members and contributors. With Great Honor, Love and Blessings, Supreme Master Ching Hai

Thank you. I want to thank from the bottom of my heart, my soul, Supreme Master Ching Hai, for the immense, infinite generosity, for the love, for the compassion and for the peace that she emanates that makes so much difference in this world. This Award is more than the material value; it has an immense spiritual value. It is more than a trophy; it shows the elevated spirit of the Supreme Master.

And I wish that she always has plenty of light, strength to continue sharing all these great values that she preaches, and that all beings and that the planet can hear this message, and that people can have a world of greater peace, love, compassion and respect for all life forms. I have no words to express (my) emotion, joy and happiness. And this award here, it will always be in a visible place to remind us always of the responsibility more than ever that we have to continue with this work that we have developed in defense of animal rights.

And I take this time to offer in a very simple way this book that ANDA produced, which consists of 21 essays on the defense of animal rights. I hope that Supreme Master will receive it and it goes with it all my loving energy, admiration for the Lady Supreme Master Ching Hai. Thank you so much; thank you also on behalf of all the partners, all the people who are part of ANDA. Many, many thanks.

Inside the book, Ms. Andrade wrote the following warm note to Supreme Master Ching Hai.

To Supreme Master Ching Hai, For your infinite love, compassion, generosity, and for the peace and consciousness that emanates to all forms of life. Much light and strength always Peace! With admiration and love, Silvana Andrade July/2011

Supreme Master Ching Hai has replied with the following message for Ms. Andrade: “Thank you for your kind loving note. May God bless you and Brazil and more.”

Our sincere thanks Silvana Andrade and all the News Agency of Animal Rights staff and volunteers for your dedication to lending a voice to the animals through the power of media. May your loving endeavors be ever more graced by Heaven’s protection and guidance.

For more details on the News Agency of Animal Rights, please visit

Respected viewers, thank you for your company on today’s program. May all the co-inhabitants of our world soon find lasting peace.

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