Black woman wearing a blue shirt, denim overalls and a white visor stands in front of a stone building with Grecian-style columns

Atiya Wells (Credit: Jonathan Bregel)

Ancestral wounding and historical trauma are key players in the lack of diversity in nature-based programs. Atiya Wells founded the nonprofit Backyard Basecamp to help communities of color in Baltimore City reconnect with nature, starting with their own backyards. With the BLISS Meadows project, Backyard Basecamp has also reclaimed 10 acres of vacant land in its neighborhood for environmental education and community greenspace. At the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center’s June Earth Optimism webinar, Atiya will highlight the importance of equity in landscape design, creation and community cultivation.

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