She is ABLE
for November 15, 2018
Our update today comes from our partners with She is ABLE, a non-profit based in Atlanta providing meaningful outdoor experiences for women living on the margins of society, women who are recovering from trafficking, abuse, addiction, and exploitation. In 2018, Legacy Collective awarded a $25,000 grant to She is ABLE to develop and implement a first-of-its-kind standardized trauma training for the outdoor industry.
She Is ABLE stands in the belief that all women, regardless of circumstance, physical experience, or narrative, are able to say, do, and create things of great power. We are the first in the outdoor industry to bring trauma education and training to the forefront of industry needs. Over the past 3-5 years, there has been an influx of outdoor programming to people recovering from trauma (Veterans, At-risk/urban youth, etc.). Unfortunately, there has not yet been a consistent training resource for guides to ensure that these participants are receiving an emotionally, mentally, and physically safe experience. We work alongside of Experience Partners (Outdoor Outfitters) and Sister Organizations (Recovery Homes) to create customized outdoor experiences that create the space for our participants to connect with their mind, body, and spirit in new and transformative ways.
Trauma survivors have different needs and desires when they are participating in outdoor activities than a non-trauma surviving participant. Research shows that there are critical preventative, proactive, and reactive measures that must be taken when leading a group with sensitivities. The current “keep pushing” activity mentality can be incredibly harmful and regressive for those that have been victims of severe physical, mental, or emotional trauma.
This understanding, partnered with Industry advocacy, provoked our team to engage in multiple surveys and feedback questionnaires to understand this need and how we, as an organization, could provide relief and solutions. From our data, we read that organizations wanted an easily accessible training platform, where guides and full teams alike could engage and test on trauma- informed principles before taking at-risk population groups on outdoor trips. This is the initiative that the Legacy Collective is supporting.
Our Advisory Council, comprising of trauma, learning, and outdoor professionals, has collaborated to build an online training tool that will support all outdoor groups that are seeking trauma-informed best practices. The training will consist of kinesthetic learning elements that educate participants on the realities of trauma in the outdoors, best practices as specific events unfold, and preventative measures to avoid triggering participants. This training will be available for not only our partners, but for any outdoor group or personnel that is wanting to feel equipped in navigating trauma in the outdoor industry.