GirlTrek gûrl-?trek : (v.) To lace up our sneakers and walk each day as a declaration of self-care. (v.) To heal our bodies, inspire our daughters, and reclaim the streets of our neighborhoods. (v.) To reestablish walking as a healing tradition in Black communities as tribute to those who walked before us. (n.) A health movement organized by volunteers across America to inspire one million by the end of 2020.
GirlTrek, a health movement for Black women and girls, recently launched its second season of #BlackHistoryBootCamp. The Acts of Resistance walking challenge celebrates powerful acts of resistance in Black culture.
Like season one of #BlackHistoryBootCamp, which focused on Black women of historic significance such as Ida B. Wells and Ella Baker, GirlTrek cofounders T. Morgan Dixon and Vanessa Garrison will convene a daily discussion at 9 a.m. PST (except on weekends) where thousands will dial in to listen and walk in virtual solidarity. The accompanying #BlackHistoryBootCamp podcast will be available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Buzzsprout platforms.
“Black History Bootcamp is designed for Black women. It’s for us, by us,” said Dixon, who co-hosts the podcasts from Washington D.C.. “We’d also like to extend a special pass to our allies – those who are down with GirlTrek’s life-saving mission. Bootcamp is a perfect opportunity to learn and connect without taking up space.”
The mission of GirlTrek, as noted in its website, is to inspire one million African-American women and girls to develop a daily habit of walking and to “pioneer a health movement for African-American women and girls grounded in civil rights history and principles through walking campaigns, community leadership, and health advocacy.”
GirlTrek’s active members support local and national policy to increase physical activity through walking, improve access to safe places to walk, protect and reclaim green spaces, and improve the walkability and built environments of 50 high-need communities across the United States.
The #BlackHistoryBootCamp walking challenge is free; however, registration is required to participate: https://mailchi.mp/girltrek/bhbactsofresistanceedition?mc_cid=9a961008a6&mc_eid=dd905bd92e
“Black history is everyone’s history,” Dixon said. “We’re excited to see you in the streets because the personal is political and daily walks are a radical form of protest.”
With Partnership for a Healthier America, The Centers for Disease Control, Stanford Prevention Research Center, The American Council on Exercise, Safe Routes to School National Partnership, and The Sierra Club, GirlTrek has developed a world-class training for African-American women to serve as health professionals in the areas of fitness, mental health, nutrition, and environmental stewardship.
With 820,000 members and counting, GirlTrek, as profiled on CNN, is the largest health movement and nonprofit for Black women and girls in the country. GirlTrek encourages walking as the first practical step to leading healthier, more fulfilled lives. The group is on a mission to inspire one million Black women to walk in the direction of their healthiest, most fulfilled lives by the end of 2020 and it all starts with taking the pledge at GirlTrek.org.
“It’s Summer 2020 and the universe is asking us to show up as Black and as proud as we possible we can,” said Garrison. “We want all of you to show up on the pavement with your sneakers laced up, prepared to walk it out with us.”