New project to train 100 walk leaders from global majority communities

Aspiring walk leaders from eight groups representing people from the global majority began their training in April.

16 May 2024

The Ramblers is delighted to be part of a new project that aims to improve representation in the outdoors by supporting people from the global majority to become qualified walk leaders.  

Aspiring walk leaders from eight groups representing people from the global majority began their training in April. The project, called the Walk Together Pathway, brings together Black Girls Hike, Black2Nature, Bristol Steppin Sistas, Mosaic Outdoors, Muslim Hikers, NYCE (Nature, Youth, Connection, and Education), Peak District Mosaic and Sheffield Environmental Movement. 


Tackling under-representation 

Despite representing 15% of the population in England and Wales, people from the global majority are widely under-represented in the outdoors, accounting for only 1% of National Park visitors in 2019.1 

Cost and access are key barriers encountered by people regardless of their ethnicity, but for people from the global majority, these challenges are coupled with a lack of representation in the outdoors, which leads to the feeling that they might not be welcome in outdoor spaces, as well as fear of discrimination and cultural differences.  

The aim of the Walk Together Pathway project is that as many people as possible are supported to enjoy the outdoors, to understand more about the natural world and the extreme challenges it is facing, and ultimately be motivated to take positive action to care for it. The Pathway aspires to address the lack of representation and feeling of belonging that prevents people from the global majority from enjoying the outdoors by training 100 new walk leaders over the next three years, building skills, knowledge, and confidence. As a result of training more walk leaders, it is estimated that approximately 10,000 people will benefit from the increased capacity these walking groups will have. 

One Pathway participant said: “I absolutely love to introduce people to the beauty of the outdoors. It never ceases to amaze me that so many people never really experience it. I want through the Pathway to gain the skills and qualification to indulge in my passion for the outdoors and National Parks and introduce as many people as I can to it. Whether walking in my local park, lowland moorland or mountains, the mental and physical benefits to people's health are clear. To think you as a walk leader can support people in this way is fantastic.” 


Skills and confidence training 

Participants will be undertaking Lowland Leader, Hill and Moorland Leader, or Mountain Leader qualifications through the awarding body Mountain Training, to equip them with the skills, confidence, and knowledge to devise safe and enjoyable walks for groups of different abilities, in a variety of different terrains. Once training is completed, they will gain further experience before attending an assessment and if successful, become qualified. 

The project is funded through a Gift in Will left to the National Trust and coordinated by the Trust. It is supported by The Ramblers, Beyond The Edge, Mountain Training, Ordnance Survey, Plas Y Brenin, Sport England and the Youth Hostel Association.  


Two young walkers strolling with wellies on a narrow path

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Lady taking a selfie photo with the Peak District landscape behind her.

Walking with the Ramblers and my local Muslim women’s group

Farkhanda is a member of the Ramblers and also leads walks for Muslim women who might feel hesitant to join mainstream walking groups.