Strengthen your LGBTQ+ allyship in your running community
May 17, 2023|By Brooks Staff
Pride is all about championing the LGBTQ+ community. Here's how allies can support this community on run.
Senior runner experience specialist Natalie Weiss (she/her) and packing team lead Malissa Little (she/them) are co-chairs of BRAVE (Brooks Rainbow Alliance, Vocation & Education) - a Brooks employee resource group for LGBTQ+ people and allies. The group provides resources and experiences for members that build community, advance careers, and support an inclusive culture at Brooks.
For Natalie, an ally is someone who not only accepts those in the LGBTQ+ community, but also appreciates the diversity of the community, recognizes the struggles members have gone through and continue to face, and actively advocates for LGBTQ+ rights.
The LGBTQ+ community is diverse, and we have different backgrounds and stories. What being an ally means to one person in my community might be quite different than what being an ally means to me. To me, being a great ally for me and my community is a blend of both the personal and public, but I recognize others in my community will have other definitions of what a great ally is to them."
Malissa considers an ally a friend. "An ally is someone who wants to support despite not actually feeling the struggle. They ask about where, when, and how is the best way to help. And they show up even if they don't exactly know what you need. An ally can also be a voice that is heard where our voices cannot travel." she said.
You can become a stronger ally by listening, supporting, and advocating for safe spaces and protective policies for LGBTQ+ people.
Ways to strengthen your LGBTQ+ allyship in the run community
Run with a LGBTQ+ run club or work with your run club to fundraise for a local LGBTQ+ community organization.
Champion others not to assume pronouns and that it's okay to ask someone their preferred pronouns.
Advocate for a non-binary race category at local running events.
Create safe spaces for anyone, especially youth, no matter where they are in their running or identity journey. Brooks is putting allyship into action by providing scholarships to Camp Brave Trails, helping LGBTQ+ youth travel from near and far to a leadership camp where they can find their people, their place, and their passions. Be an ally and join us by sharing your run, your match, or Run Proud gear with #PrideForMiles.
Support LGBTQ+ artists and creators
Artist and activist Wednesday Holmes is bringing their inclusive, inviting, and inherently joyful designs to our limited edition Run Proud Collection. With this collaboration, we're empowering all members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies to show their true colors. Follow Wednesday on Instagram and see more of their work at hellomynameiswednesday.com
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LGBTQ+ support resources
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is actively working to advocate for the rights LGBTQ+ people. To learn more about how you can raise awareness for and uplift the lives of trans people, check out these resources.
At Brooks, we believe everyone who wants to run is welcome to run, and everyone who runs a place has to do it. Our purpose is to inspire everyone to run their path. We champion the run for all and believe in the power of a diverse running community that includes people of different races/ethnicities, national origins, abilities, genders, ages, sexual orientation, body types, and circumstances.