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  • Kathy Schrenk

Race and Nature

Note: If this post looks familiar, that's because I originally published it in the fall. I decided it bears repeating:

When I was investigating hikes to go in my guidebook, I drove past a lot of Confederate flags out in the boonies of Missouri. Mind you, most of these hikes are less than hour from St. Louis. You don't have to get far from the city to find these scary symbols. It's no wonder we often hear statistics about low participation in outdoor pursuits by people of color. And this is just one of many reasons why PoC's might participate at a lower rate than white people. I've been trying to educate myself on this topic as much as I can. Here are some of the resources I've discovered.

* These organizations work to build equity in outdoor pursuits. Follow them on social media, like and follow their posts to boost their message the outdoors is for everyone (there are, of course, many more, this is just a sample that I've discovered and learned from):

Outdoor Afro

Latino Outdoors

Trail Posse

Diversify Outdoors

Girl Trek

*This article about the "anxiety of hiking while black" was very informative to me.

*The Adventure Gap, an engaging book about a Denali expedition comprised entirely of people of color that also gives historical context for the racial imbalance in the outdoors and suggestions for how to make change.

*An incredible resource for learning whose land you're on -- it displays a map with overlays of the historic territories of indigenous peoples on multiple continents.

Again, this is just a sampling. There are so many more books, articles, and organizations addressing this topic. Educate yourself. The more people are aware of the "adventure gap," the better chance we have of making change.

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