Uniting for Learning: The Summit Experience

The Summit is organised by Phil Young, founder of the Outsiders Project  and Soraya Abdel-Hadi, founder of All The Elements. This event took place 31st May - 3rd June 2024 and is now in its fourth year and shows continuous growth with each passing year. It is a wonderful opportunity for community leaders from underrepresented groups to come together for a weekend in the outdoors. 

    Photo credit: Les Latchman 

The conversation around diversity and inclusion in outdoor spaces has evolved significantly. This shift has led to the growth of community groups, where individuals with a shared love of natural outdoors connect to share their experiences.

   Photo credit: Les Latchman 

This event allowed outdoor community leaders, specifically those focused on POC audiences, to share their knowledge, lived experiences, and outdoor activities with others. The Summit creates a space for exchanging ideas and sharing experiences among people facing similar challenges.

They also invited outdoor sector organisations to participate in crucial discussions on access and representation. This year it was British Mountaineering Council, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and Eryri Snowdonia National Park. 

These organisations took part in a form of panel talk to discuss about their D&I strategies. The goal was to assist them in shaping practical implementation. It was a candid yet constructive dialogue shedding light on the real barriers faced by minority and ethnic groups in the UK. The space also provided an opportunity to identify the challenges to effecting change within the outdoor sector. It was great to hear from others what is actually happening within their organisations and the challenges they face; whilst the group was able to suggest ideas on what they can take back to their organisation to effect change. A real informative session led by Keme Nzerem, journalist, filmmaker and presenter mainly C4News.

Photo credit: Les Latchman 
I am always hopeful for change and opportunities like these to talk directly to the organisations can only be a positive one.

   Photo credit: Les Latchman 

Photo above depicts a beautiful session by Evie Muir. A natural writing promise session inspired by the book 'How I Became a Tree' by Sumana Roy. I really enjoyed this session and had the opportunity to write a short poem of my own which I shared with the group.

The Power of Silence

In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me to stop and pause for a minute, it is OK;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me it is OK to be sad or angry;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me it is OKto ask for help, you do not always have to do it all on your own;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me how are you feeling today?
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me come to me and you will find peace;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me look for me and spend some time here with me;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me healing takes time;
In their silent language of resistance, the trees tell me what have you done for you today?

Written by me πŸ™πŸΏπŸŒ³

I appreciated this moment and it gave me peace. It always amazes me how safe and at peace I feel in the outdoors.

Gathering a group of passionate individuals resulted in significant experiences and learning opportunities. I was completely blown away by the experience and inspired for what we can do together as a community.

Being a runner, it was incredible to be in an environment with other outdoor enthusiast and hear their stories and journey of how they got to where they are and what they are doing as community leaders.
   Photo credit: Les Latchman

Lovely to lead a run session with Tasha titled 'Hello Hill'. The rest is history πŸ˜‚πŸƒπŸΏ‍♀️. At the Summit of the run, Tasha and I gave a little more background about what brought us here and why we are passionate about facilitating and inspiring POC to move and get active. 
Setting the mindset before we started our run πŸ’« "As we run we become......"

    Photo by Les Latchman 

A beautiful hike up Cadair Idis - Snowdonia National Park led by Sameed and Mahroof.

   Photo by Les Latchman 

Glorious sunny yoga session led Sian of MoonBeam Yoga 

    Photo by Les Latchman

This AMAZING, FEARFUL, HEART STOPPING mountain biking session was a wild ride. So, I can ride a bike but I have not done anything like this since I was in school, a few decades ago! 

Session was led by Toks, founder of Black Unity Bike Ride and Dulce. I literally was  supported by Mahroof and Keme my mountain bike teachers. The encouragement, tips and guidance carried me through and increased my confidence with every bump! 🚲 

Thank you Phil and Soraya for the invite.  

Much appreciation and thanks to HF holidays and Patagonia for their financial and accommodation support. Without which any of this would not be possible. 

Let's continue the work together 🌳❤️πŸ™πŸΏ


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