Stories for Change Working Group
Sharing stories of people with deep, varied, and multifaceted relationships with the outdoors.
Working group members Rachel, Tessa, Moon, Negina, and Julie at the July 2022 working group retreat at Wolfe's Neck Center in Freeport, Maine.
Too often, narratives and images of youth spending time outside in Maine are limited to those who are white and economically privileged, which creates a single story of who is supposed to engage in the outdoors. Not only does Maine, the unceded territory of the Wabanaki, have vast indigenous populations who have been in relationship with this land for generations upon generations, but it is an increasingly diverse state with strong immigrant populations and abundant communities of people of color who call Maine home, all of whom have the basic human right to the outdoors.
The Stories for Change working group is focused on strategic and equitable storytelling: sharing stories of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) who have deep and multifaceted relationships with the outdoors. Through an intentional, trust-rooted, storyteller-led process, the group shares nature-based narratives of BIPOC individuals as well as LGBTQ+ people, youth, and others with marginalized identities. Through telling and sharing stories, the Stories for Change working group aims to transform mainstream conceptions of outdoor experiences, and to bring attention to the imperative of centering equity and recognizing historical and present-day oppression in society and outdoor and environmental learning spaces in Maine and beyond.
The group is focused on a fully collaborative and consent-based storytelling process that works towards both transformative growth and systemic change in the state. You can read the published stories here.
Do you want to collaboratively create new processes of storytelling rooted in equity?
Are you someone who cares about both process and outcome?
Do you have experience in storytelling of any sort (visual, written, spoken, strategic)?
This group's co-chairs are Nirmala Young and Tessa Shanteler.
For inquiries about the Stories for Change Working Group contact NBEC communications coordinator Emily Weyrauch.
If you'd like to get involved, fill out this interest form.
For general inquiries, contact network coordinator Nathan Broaddus
Climate change affects everyone, and has unbalanced impacts across race and class. The Climate Education Advocacy working group is invested in these questions of climate justice in working for state-level policy changes.