Photo Credit: TN
Meet The Atlanta Millenial Who Created A Social Network For Outdoorsy Black Women
Toyin Ajayi, 36, was born in England. Half Nigerian and half Ghanaian, she was raised in Atlanta GA, which makes her a multicultural peach. In January 2021, Ajayi launched Outdoorsy Black Women, a social network dedicated to supporting African American women in outdoor activities.
The site has become a huge success and now she decided to launch an app with the same name and approach.
The app has reached over 1000 members in a year and now it is about to have its first major event, Wine & Waterfalls Weekend, sponsored by REI, Merrell, Ebony Wine & Spirits, and more.
“Outdoorsy Black Women is a social network created for all Black Women. Whether you’re cis, a trans woman, or non-binary and feel comfortable being in spaces that center around the experiences of Black Women. You do have to be at least 18 to join and a Black woman or Afro-Woman of Color,” Ajayi told Travel Noire.
As a Black woman that enjoys spending time outdoors, Ajayi said that she wanted to create a safe space for other Black women like her.
“Oftentimes Black women are told that certain outdoor activities aren’t made for us and that’s just not true. Creating the Outdoorsy Black Women social network was my way of connecting all the Black women out there that are doing amazing outdoorsy things, and inspiring those that are just hoping to try new things,” Ajayi commented.
Outdoorsy Black Women is really about celebrating Black sisterhood and emphasizing that the most important aspect of the app is to take that sisterhood within her entrepreneurship. “
“There are so many wonderful organizations working hard to diversify the outdoor world, with Outdoorsy Black Women I’m just trying to do my part in this movement to provide us with more representation,” Ajayi explained.
For her, as more Black women see themselves represented in the outdoor world, more of them will be confident to enjoy outdoor activities.
“I’ve met so many amazing Black women that have inspired me already. Beekeepers, farmers, surfers and much more. It’s been fun to see so many women from all walks of life joining and connecting. I’d say the majority of our members are between 25 and 50. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Outdoorsy Black Women as we grow.”
She also revealed that membership offers access to members-only events, giveaways, blogs, forums, groups, book club, and the Black-owned business directory.
“A lot of our members are really excited about discovering and supporting some of the Black-owned campgrounds and Black-owned farms that we have listed in our Directory. I think a lot of Black women are just excited to see that there is a social network out there for us. The best part about Outdoorsy Black Women is it’s redefining what people deem to be outdoorsy,” she said.
She pointed out that Black people often do cookouts and spend time outdoors but they just don’t count those activities as being outdoorsy.
“So at the end of the day, we’re all outdoorsy in our own way. And because of that, I can confidently say that Outdoorsy Black Women is a community that all Black women can enjoy.’
Despite the success of Outdoorsy Black Women, managing a Black-owned social network dedicated to women of color receives backlash and negative comments. However, this is something Ajayi deals with well.
“It’s an interesting thing because I’m not a stranger to racist emails or direct messages. For some reason, the idea of Black women having a space to call our own makes a lot of people uncomfortable. I don’t think it’s something that surprised me, but you still hope that people are better than that.”
From a business standpoint, she thinks a lot of people constantly want her to change who the brand is for.
“While I support other communities of color, I created Outdoorsy Black Women for us because I knew we needed it and it’s my goal and intention to keep it that way.”
For the future, Ajayi said that she’ll be working on having Chapter Ambassadors in every state and hosting monthly hikes and outdoors events nationwide.
“Honestly, I would love to have Outdoorsy Black Women chapters globally in the future.”
You can find the brand on its official website, on the iOS or Google Play Store Outdoorsy Black Women.
On social media, it can be found on FB, IG, YT and TikTok through @OutdoorsyBlackWomen. For Twitter it’s @OutdoorsyBW.