Every time I step onto a trail for a run in the forest, admire a mountain, or even notice the subtle way the wind and sun join together to embrace a tree, I think about the future of our natural world.
Since the nearly four months Trump has been in office, he’s proven to be no friend of the environment; just last month he signed an executive order calling for a review of 27 national monuments designated under the Antiquities Act. He continues to leave us concerned and questioning what it all means for the environment and the places where we run and adventure.
From social media, board rooms, and coffee houses to dining room tables around the county, our conversations are ripe with vigor and urgency focusing on what we can do—our collective action.
In 2014, I founded Small Change, an initiative rooted in the belief we can make a difference both individually and as part of a larger collective to build stronger, more resilient communities. The idea is our small change, be it $5, $10, $20, or more adds up to big impact for organizations making a difference in the places we visit for our races and other adventures.
To date, over 60 organizations have benefited from Small Change and combined have received a total of nearly $5,000. It’s a small but growing community of runners and adventurers who recognize the importance of giving back and that you don’t need to give big to create meaningful change.
As trail runners we’re a pretty vocal and passionate bunch—and now the places where we run are threatened, so I’m putting out an urgent “call to action” to you:
Donate at least $20 to an environmental organization as part of running one race this year and share your Small Change donation story with me.
Here’s how Small Change works:
- Identify a nonprofit in your race or adventure destination city, region, or state
- Donate $20 (or more) directly to the organization
- Fill out the short form (click on yellow button) on my site to share your donation story
I’ll repurpose your donation story into blog posts and social media updates, giving your nonprofit of choice added awareness and publicity. Your stories also help inform about important issues, foster engagement, and encourage additional donations.
I donated $20 to Oregon Wild as part of my final training for Smith Rock Ascent. Oregon Wild is an environmental organization that works to protect and restore wildlands, wildlife, and waters as an enduring legacy for all Oregonians. Find out why I donated to this nonprofit.
Don’t think your Small Change makes a difference? If all 459 Smith Rock Ascent runners this Saturday (includes the three race distances) also donated $20 to Oregon Wild, we’d raise an impressive $9,180 – take it up a notch to $50 and nearly $23,000 would be generated for this organization fighting to protect and preserve the environment and our public lands. I hope it’s clear what we can accomplish when we join forces.
There’s no question Trump’s environmental agenda favors fossil fuels, logging, and well, pretty much anything that doesn’t conjure up wilderness bliss, so now is the time to act.
The Small Change initiative raises needed funds for environmental organizations and helps connect the dots between trail running and the places that bring us so much joy and meaning.
I encourage you to keep elected officials accountable, volunteer for trail maintenance in your community, and share what you have learned and your resources with others.