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People of Color Climb (POC) Night FAQ

What does POC stand for?

“POC” stands for “Person Of Color.” This term is often used by individuals who identify as “non-white” or “other” in the context of whiteness. While the the word “POC” can be used to unite non-white communities, it can be viewed as a problematic term. Many have rightly argued that the application of “POC” to all nonwhite individuals and communities erases the struggle unique to black and indigenous persons. Climbers of Color readily acknowledges the shortcomings of the term “POC,” however, we have decided to align this event with other POC Climb Nights that occur around the country. 

 

What is the mission of POC Climb Night? 

The mission of POC Climb Night is to create community and increase access to climbing for POCs. 

 

Who is POC Climb Night for?

POC Climb Night is for individuals who self-identify as people/persons of color. 

 

Why is POC Climb Night important?

Events like POC Climb Night are key to diversifying the current climbing community in Washington State and the US as a whole. According to the American Alpine Club’s Inaugural State of Climbing Report released in July 2019, less than 20% of climbers who filled their survey identified as a POC. These numbers simply do not reflect the growing racial diversity within our country

 

I don't identify as a Person of Color, can I still participate in POC Climb Night as an ally?

Yes! Allies are welcome to our events, however, we ask that they refrain from using the discount if they are financially able to pay for the day-pass. 

 

I am not participating directly in POC Climb Night, but I climb in a gym that hosts these events while the events are going on, am I allowed to talk to people participating in POC Climb Night?

Of course! POC Climb Night is all about creating community. We encourage dialogue between participants of the event and gym members. 

 

Does Climbers of Color host events that are exclusively for POC?

Yes. All of our official rock climbing and mountaineering courses are POC-only. This includes all instructors and participants. To learn why having POC-only spaces is important, this article is a good resource.

 

Why is entry for POC Climb Night discounted?

POCs have historically been underrepresented in the sport of climbing. By offering a regular discounted evening of climbing, we seek to decrease the barriers to access to POC communities. Our event is very much similar to the weekly Women’s Climb Nights that you see at gyms across the country. While these nights seek to address the gender disparity in climbing, we seek to address the sport’s lack of racial diversity. 

 

Who are Climbers of Color?

Climbers of Color is a POC-led, Washington-based non-profit that was founded in 2018. Our goal is to promote diversity, equity and inclusion in the mountaineering community by creating leaders of color. To accomplish this mission, we provide supportive mentorship, technical training and access to key resources including gear and financial sponsorships.

 

How can I support Climbers of Color?

You can donate to our organization through our donation page! We do have 501(c)3 status. 

If you’re interested in becoming a volunteer, please send us a message!