As a professional mountain runner, Dakota Jones races on trails all over the world — from the Swiss Alps to the California foothills. So he and other elite runners see the effects of global warming firsthand.
Jones: “We’re constantly in the outdoors, experiencing these wild places and seeing the changes that they’re undergoing.”
After participating in a running camp in Alaska, Jones had an idea: bringing concerned runners together to empower each other to take climate action.
Jones: “Slowly, I was able to put together this idea of having a running camp where every participant comes with a climate-focused problem or project to address in their community.”
In 2021, he launched Footprints Running Camp. Participants spend a week running together, learning about climate change, and developing climate action projects to pursue back at home.
For example, one former camper created a curriculum about the impacts of climate change in Colorado. Another has been documenting how Black and Brown women athletes are taking climate action.
Jones hopes the camp provides a model for how to mobilize people around any shared interest — not just running.
Jones: “Whatever brings people together can be a platform for climate action.”
Reporting Credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media