Just catching up to my outdoor and agriculture adventures? Well, welcome. The quick and Deep South dirty: I’m hot and heavy into my third year as communications director of national not-for-profit Outdoor Afro. I’m stationed in rural Georgia, traveling across the country to capture the organization’s community impact. Converting homebodies into sanctified nature lovers using the power of the digital pen. This fun, Oakland-based brand has nurtured transformative experiences and connections in nature for 15 years now. Successfully reaching 2024’s “Year of Innovation” because of folks like you.
Longstanding and new social followers, loyal supporters, volunteer leaders, community participants, and outdoor partners have contributed to the brand achieving its wildest nature dreams. That have literally come true, too. Take for instance our participation network. Outdoor Afro’s popular, year-round events across U.S. communities inspire approximately 60,000 people to join us annually for customized outdoor activities – family reunion-style. Then, there’s our swim program, Making Waves. We rounded out 2023 funding more than 1,000 kids and caregivers to learn water safety and basic swimming techniques. Life-saving skills. All thanks to program believers like you.
We’ve even certified up to 20 volunteer leaders to guide kayak and canoe trips safely and sustainably within the past two years. Newer community participants are ready for playdates to discover and travel neighborhood waterways for educational enjoyment. That said, a new year means new opportunities to create community impact together. If you don’t know exactly where to start, that’s A-OK. Below are 8 digital ports to join our journey. No matter where you plug in, you’re automatically contributing to our mission work to celebrate and inspire Black connections and leadership in nature. Let’s get started:
Outdoor Afro spans 32 states, including Washington, D.C. Networks are in roughly 60 U.S. cities. Our networks are your instant access to forming new friendships while exploring nature in your neighborhood or surrounding community. Through Outdoor Afro networks, you can participate in everything from group hiking, biking, boating, fishing, foraging, skiing, and paddling. Locate your Outdoor Afro region (Midwest, Northeast, South, or West) using the link below. From there, you can sign up for in-person Meetup events happening monthly. Our selected and trained team of volunteer leaders curate and guide these network adventures. Through Meetup, volunteer leaders keep you posted about event details and upcoming activities. Also, join your network’s designated Facebook page to build community, and continue to learn where exploration awaits with family and friends. CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP.
We love when online guests pay us a visit. Stopping by outdoorafro.org helps you know exactly who we are, what we do in nature, and where we’re heading each year. As mentioned earlier, 2024 rings in our “Year of Innovation.” By clicking through our online home place, you will learn Outdoor Afro’s love story with nature, more about our Founder and CEO Rue Mapp, and the ones who work behind the scenes to ensure we’re fulfilling our mission. Our site also shares current partnerships, community programs, social media campaigns, and real-life stories that support our Black joy experiences taking place across neighborhoods nationwide. Have specific questions about our “why” in nature? Our site is your primary source to connect with the right digital resources. CLICK HERE TO KNOW OUR MISSION.
Nearly 170,000 Outdoor Afro followers like, comment, share, and take action from our social media updates and footage. Our almost daily dose of digital news, announcements, and achievements stem from your support. Our top social platforms include Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and X (formerly known as Twitter). Continuing to celebrate Outdoor Afro’s nature narratives, our genuine content is an opportunity to participate in digital to in-person activities with us and stay on top of organizational developments. Our award-winning Marketing & Communications Department shares powerful visuals and videos that offer fun gateways into outdoor recreation, conservation, and education with ease. CLICK HERE TO CONTACT US.
By signing up for Outdoor Afro’s monthly eNewsletters, you’re getting first dibs about our nature wins. Your free copy is delivered straight to your email inbox, recapping that month’s success stories because of your generous support. Our eNewsletter will also notify you when future professional opportunities within our organization are available. And give you the heads up about upcoming partnerships and programs. Our news and notifications are designed so you can easily digest and keep a timely pulse on our organizational progress. Stay in the know about our community and nature work helping to strengthen relationships with local land, water, and wildlife. In addition to opening new outdoor career and professional development doors for you. CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE.
Donating to Outdoor Afro helps us continue to reach our mission, which is to celebrate and inspire Black connections and leadership in nature. No amount is too big or small. Every contribution counts. You’re supporting our year-round programming more than you will ever know. When you donate (better yet, become a recurring donor), Outdoor Afro is able to provide our growing team of volunteer leaders – and the thousands of nature lovers and new adventurers who leaders guide in nature – with wilderness, recreation, and life-saving skills; safe, appropriate gear and equipment; free or discounted access to private outdoor spaces; and access to historical and civic information you can use to take care of the public and community spaces you love. When you donate, our Making Waves program can provide more kids and caregivers new opportunities to learn how to swim, save a loved one’s life, and leverage local resources – public swimming pools, beaches, rivers, and lakes. When you donate, we’re able to help neighborhoods expand outdoor recreational activities that become instrumental in pursuing healthier, joyful lifestyles. CLICK HERE TO DONATE.
It’s warmth that welcomes nature conversations with family and friends. Our co-branded shirt collection with Oakland-based partner Oaklandish comes with comfort for any and all outdoor adventures. The collection includes our signature short-sleeve shirts (in black and white), long-sleeve shirts (in black only), and hoodies (in black only). The fun part: The style options range from business slay to backpacker play. The bonus: Every purchase you make goes toward our charitable, not-for-profit work. CLICK HERE TO SHOP.
We’re always open to forming meaningful relationships with people, communities, initiatives, and brands that share the same values we have about reconnecting Black people and Black communities to nature. Our amazing new and deep-rooted partnerships have helped our organization elevate and innovate for the past 15 years in the outdoors. Brands like REI Co-op, KEEN, CLIF® Bar, ENO, and Smartwool have become influential collaborators to educate new audiences about the collective difference we make across the United States. Introduce our audiences and readers to new outdoor products and services that benefit our neighborhoods. To learn more about our current partnership tiers, email de*********@ou*********.org today. CLICK HERE TO VIEW COLLABORATORS.
The truth is: We’re confronted by gloom-and-doom headlines daily. The good news is that Outdoor Afro produces happy clappy content monthly that will leave you feeling so fuzzy wuzzy about tapping into the outdoors and pursuing healthier lifestyles. We produce original narratives so you’re honestly informed about people, places, and things tied to our mission work. Outdoor Afro’s blog features cover personal essays; product and partner reviews; insider nature knowledge; and human interest stories that salute the pioneering paths Black people and Black communities have carved out within the outdoor industry. From big cities to small towns. Our community programs and content have traveled the globe. Piqued the interest of media mogul Oprah Winfrey to tennis icon Venus Williams – who both have participated in our network activities. Our stories reinforce the Black experience in nature from an asset-framing lens. National to international media outlets like CBS, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel Weekly, AFAR, and Essence Magazine are a few prominent publications that have highlighted our organization throughout the past decade. CLICK HERE TO ACCESS STORIES.