Developing your outdoor skills is a positive and rewarding journey that for most people will open up a whole new world of exciting opportunities. Some of my clients started out with me learning the basics of navigation and are now going out on their own adventures, other clients have become competent rock climbers or are now pursuing mountain leadership qualifications in the outdoors. For me it’s the best job in the world and the rewards are watching your clients become more confident and competent in hills and mountains, which inevitably will change their lives for the better.
With all of this comes a responsibility. The responsibility is to ensure that everybody who comes onto our courses will be treated with respect, dignity and supported through their respective journeys regardless of gender, faith or background.
So how do we achieve this goal of inclusivity? How do we create an environment that will treat everybody with respect and allow them to develop their skills on an even playing field? Some would argue that female only courses would solve part of this problem but for me it doesn’t create an inclusive environment, it simply plays to the narrative that women can’t do well around men. Inclusivity means including people and as outdoor educators this is exactly what we should be aiming for.
Our pledge is to offer a positive, supportive environment that will develop our clients no matter gender, faith, or background. We will achieve this by -
- Better communication with clients to ensure we are achieving our high standards.
- All of our instructors will be trained on how to challenge gender or religious bias.
- Where it is safe to do so we will accommodate religious or cultural needs.
- All of our course introductions will include a discussion about treating everybody in the group with respect and allowing differing opinions and views.
- We will not facilitate gender specific courses or events (i.e. female only courses).
- Zero tolerance to racist or sexist comments.
If you have an opinion relating to the topics in this blog why not get in touch. I would love to discuss the issues people have experienced and how we can create the best and most inclusive environment for all of our clients.
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