The Feminist Hiking Collective - formed in January and registered in May 2020, is a feminist non-profit organisation and a transnational hub for feminist hikers.
Our aim is to build collective feminist leadership and collective feminist power through hiking and mountaineering, and to contribute to transformative system change through feminist popular education and resource co-creation, to build a just feminist world that is grounded in our belonging to nature.
We organise feminist hiking programmes based on feminist popular education, and we facilitate opportunities for marginalized women* to get involved in feminist hiking and mountaineering. Our work is also focused on building the collective feminist power of mountain women, and more broadly of all those identities (not only gender) oppressed by the patriarchal system. We have a strong focus on feminist mountain protection, and we foreground the collective knowledge and experience of mountain communities. We also work to contribute building a hiking and mountaineering culture free of any form of oppression and discrimination, inclusive and accessible, centred on collaboration, humility and collective power.
We co-develop transnational and national collaborative projects, and co-develop collective research and communication work. We are grounded in collective feminist transformative power and we developing a reflection project called Unpacking Collective Feminist Leadership, to keep informing our practice and to include tools for system transformation, from the inner to the wider society levels. In the works, we have a second reflection project on a feminist approach to collective mountain protection. The organisation is coordinated and structured in a collective and decentralised way.
We deeply believe that hiking is a feminist act! It is connected with taking care of ourselves collectively, it's about focusing on the present moment, the trail and what's around us, on our essence and resilience, beyond any oppressive and discriminatory patriarchal standard, stereotype and influence, it is a grounding activity that builds and sustains our collective feminist power.
Webinar on collective feminist leadership co-hosted with Srilatha Batliwala on 23 September 2021, organised by Fair Share as part of Feminist Leadership - Eight Weeks Exploration programme - recording and details.
Camminando Trasformando: a hiking initiative open to women* co-organised with La Foresta Accademia di Comunità and Terre Alte from 28 August to 6 September 2021 - programme and blog.
Our priorities include:
- organize feminist hiking experiences, both open to people of any gender and for women only, focusing on the participation of marginalized women, exploring the concept, elements and principles of intersectional feminism & feminist leadership through a wide range of activities during the hikes based on feminist popular education, power analysis and feminist consciousness-raising tools, including by creating the space and opportunity to support self-awareness and collective care, our connection with each other, our reciprocity with nature, our connection and belonging to nature, being in the moment, developing togetherness, resilience and perseverance, building power within and collective power for positive change;
- Co-write and disseminate collective feminist research products including through reflection projects;
- co-organize together with our partners transnational projects;
- provide a transnational platform as a space to share tools, experiences, tips and trails and to connect feminist hikers and hiking groups, facilitate collaboration and support;
- share and gather collective stories through a blog section.
Past feminist hikes:
- 17th July 2021 Circolo dei Suoli - A Tutto Bosco (A Walk in the Woods) organised by Brave New Alps with the participation of Feminist Hiking Collective, Filippo Favilli and Sculpture Forest Sanctuary as part of the Biennale Gherdëina in Ortisei.
- 8th March 2020 Chiltern Hills (UK) - all genders are welcome.
- 8th February 2020 Victoria Park (UK) women*-only walk.
Feminist hikes aim to be collective transformative space where everyone feels equal and included. Here you can find our safer space guide. NB: participants to our feminist hikes take their own responsibility for health & safety.
We are a trans-inclusive organization with a non-binary understanding of gender. Our hikes and collaborative projects aim to include people of any gender, but also to focus on the inclusion of those identities (not only gender) most marginalised and discriminated by the patriarchal system, with an intersectional approach.
*those self-identifying with this gender
For us feminism is a collective commitment and practice to dismantle the racist, capitalist, neocolonial, neoliberal patriarchy which encompasses all systems of oppression, violence, domination and discrimination, and to build an inclusive society as a community that sees every being as having the same worth and importance and feel part of a whole with Mother Earth, where there is no marginalization or privilege, where media talks about collective stories of change and does not seek to create idols, where humility, solidarity and collective care are practiced in every way. In this feminist community there is feminist leadership, where leadership is intended as a collective commitment to support a community, and not as a way to seek personal recognition or fame, as 'likes' don’t matter in this feminist vision. Feminist leadership aims to profoundly transform the way that leadership and power are understood and practised, it is at the heart of creating non-oppressive environments and transformative social change, and is necessary to build a just world for all nature.
We have gathered here some wonderful resources on intersectional feminism, feminist leadership, collective care and power.
Feminist hiking activities & tools
During feminist hikes we include activities to build collective feminist leadership and power based on feminist popular education. Here (work in progress) you can find some examples of what the activities look like, and a gathering of suggested hiking trails and routes.
Here are a few useful tips and guides from external sources on what to bring on a hike, safety, preparation and hiking equipment/clothing.
If what you're finding here sounds interesting, whether you or your group are passionate hikers or have never been on a mountain before, sign up here to participate! If you'd like to know more, just say hello or share something with us, you can contact us here.
The Feminist Hiking Collective is a non-profit organization, registered in Italy as ONLUS and Ente del Terzo Settore with fiscal code 90067600446.