Multicultural awareness in nature
Black Girls Hike Global, is an outdoor adventure company, created to engage with women of colour, encouraging them to explore the great outdoors. Only this year, Tinelle Louis and Jessica Newton, also known as Tin and Jess, pulled together their passion for creative thinking, exploring nature and entrepreneurship.
Tin, who is also the CEO of a web design firm, and Jess, sporting a love for hiking, environmental issues and policy were the perfect combinations In building this community-centered business which now has 30+ requests for more chapters to be opened around the world.
But It’s not just them
GirlTrek, born in LA, California by Morgan and Vanessa, who shared a strong belief in self-care, 2Pac and smothered pork chops.
Morgan and Vanessa met as college friends. They bonded over 2Pac, Nikki Giovanni and their inability to say no to smothered pork chops. GirlTrek was never an “aha moment” but a shared belief in radical acts of self-care. The two dared friends and family to walk with them, and confidently use their neighborhoods and surrounding countryside to heal and gain a greater awareness of their surroundings.
Multi Cultural hiking is on the up.
Typically a white male privilege, more recently a white female activity, getting outdoors and hiking, especially In the west has been very exclusive to the white middle or working middle class. Access to transport, affordability of kit, and social conditioning all contribute. Work done by the Outward Bound Trust (they send kids into the great outdoors for real learning experiences) highlights the fantastic work done within the industry such as the individually lead efforts above. The RYA (Royal Yacht Association) are developing initiatives to engage people fro ethnic minorities, Mountain Training, are looking at how their training scheme can engage with people from different backgrounds.
There’s even a Women in Adventure conference, along with several online groups, often sprouting from the popular meetup platform.
Well good question. Efforts to engage fringe communities and under represented minorities will continue to drive participation,. However, with the growing interest in outdoor activities, its likely that both levels of participation may rise on an equal level, and therefore the gap will for some time remain consistent.
Regardless, we are certainly moving quickly in the right direction.