June 03, 2016
My brother and I are using our upcoming JMT thru-hike this July to support the Big City Mountaineers (BCM) charity and its crucial work with at-risk urban youth.
BCM’s mission is to impart crucial life-skills to at-risk urban youth through transformative wilderness mentoring.
The John Muir Trail is a 340 km trail that snakes its way through California's High Sierra mountains from Mt Whitney in the Southeast — the tallest peak in the contiguous US — to Yosemite Valley in the North. For many it ranks amongst the 10 greatest hikes in the world and for good reason: no road crossings for hundreds of miles, pristine alpine wilderness, and incredible vistas! We will be thru-hiking the trail over 14 days and climbing several additional 4,000 m peaks along the way. (Find out more at johnmuirtrail.org)
We are very lucky to have (had) loving and supportive parents, family and friends, who introduced us to the great outdoors at a young age. Many urban kids have unfortunately never experienced nature — let alone ventured outside of their postal code. Theirs is a world fraught with abandonment and socioeconomic hardships, and a future much too often plagued by crime and violence.
Why does it matter? It's all about the reciprocal benefits!
- These kids represent the future of their under-served communities, and many will become tomorrow’s most effective agents of change. Let’s empower them!
- Poor urban communities are often the most affected by environmental disasters, which will only worsen with climate change. Let’s make them an integral part of the solution through exposure and education — one has to experience and value the environment to want to protect it!
- The great outdoors belongs to us ALL, yet are only currently enjoyed by the few. Let’s democratize access and reap the many benefits: health, tourism, land conservation, the list goes on!
We can't do it without YOU! Please participate in our fundraiser and help us spread the word. A $50 contribution would be an extraordinary gesture, but so would any amount that you are comfortable with. EVERY dollar raised goes STRAIGHT to BCM in order to:
- Provide wilderness mentoring opportunities to under-resourced urban youth age 13 to 18
- Cultivate relationships between youth and caring adult mentors
- Offer a unique 1-to-1 ratio of adults to youth
- Improve teen self-awareness and personal responsibility
- Promote group development and effective communication
- Partner with existing youth development agencies to better address the ongoing needs of under-resourced youth
- Deliver safe wilderness expeditions led by professional field instructors
Much more information is available in BCM's 2014 Annual Report.
TWICE the IMPACT! Positive Tracks, a partner charity of BCM, will match all of the money that we raise and DOUBLE the difference that we can make!
Thank you so much for your support!
Nicolas & Jérôme