A Time For Change And Action

High 5 Adventure Learning Center is dedicated to supporting people to improve the way they connect, live, work and learn with each other. Racism is a barrier that impacts the ability of everyone in the community to do all of these things. It is our responsibility to help remove the barriers of racism to support the growth of stronger communities where everyone is valued. High 5 is committed to supporting the creation of this new reality. 

In an effort to address racial injustice, we created a working group named A Time for Change & Action (ATCA) in the fall of 2020. Staff members from across High 5’s departments meet regularly to build our awareness, skills, and support change within the organization and our field. We recognize that there are multiple identities individuals hold that lead to experiencing privilege and oppression with the way our society is currently structured. The ATCA working group is dedicated to addressing racism specifically in an effort to be able to narrow our scope in our historically white-dominated field of adventure and experiential education.

Thus far, our two areas of focus have been: 

  1. To ensure that what we create and share as an organization is racially inclusive and responsive, and 
  2. To remove obstacles for more Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) and BIPOC-led organizations to flourish in this field. 

With these aims in mind, we are engaged in a variety of initiatives, including:

  • Changing the name of one of our challenge course elements, The Mohawk Ironworkers Walk, in partnership with leaders of the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne (see the full story here)
  • Building awareness and making skills in this field more geographically accessible by running trainings and workshops in commutable and racially diverse settings
  • Supporting BIPOC professionals to facilitate virtual and/or in-person workshops while tapping into our network and resources
  • Offering a monthly dialogue focused on race and racism for all High 5 staff 
  • Identifying organizations to support staff members who hold marginalized identities

We recognize that conversations, input, visions, and collaboration with those directly impacted will lead to the most powerful changes. This is a learning process, and we’re learning through our own experiences and those of others. We welcome the opportunity to talk with you, answer any questions, hear your thoughts and reactions, and share further details. Please feel free to reach out to us here to continue the conversation..

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