A message to our Wanderful community:
When we travel, we immerse ourselves in the worlds of other people. If we’re lucky, those moments of immersion change us for the better. They help us see and understand — to a level we couldn’t before — perspectives and realities different from our own.
But our ability to have these moments — and then to come back, to take and learn from them and then leave — is a privilege. Not all of us can step away from our own realities, much less into others.
While travel can be a positive experience for many of us personally, the tourism industry has a long record of actively harming Black and brown communities. The history of travel and “discovery” is violent and filled with colonialism, forced displacement, and genocide. To travel and not look at the world through this lens — to not think critically about who has had access to travel and whose voices are represented in our industry and in media today — is irresponsible.
The events of the past few weeks have left us heartbroken, but they are not new phenomena, and they parallel travel’s oft-overlooked legacy. The only things that have changed are technology and our ability to instantly document injustice.
The centuries of persistent violence against Black people in the United States and across the globe must end, and we must be a part of that revolution.
If you are Black, we want you to know that you belong here, you are a part of this community, and your life matters. Wanderful was built to elevate underrepresented voices, celebrate humanity, and embrace intersectional identities — not just in travel, but around the world. We exist for you.
If you’re not Black, I ask that you join our community in doing the work for justice together. I don’t have all the answers, but what I do know is that this is not just about being against racism, it is about being actively anti-racist. About truly examining what we’re doing as individuals and as a community to dismantle the structures that oppress, and to be better — whether it’s in listening to Black people being vocal and providing education, using our platforms to amplify those voices, having conversations with friends and family, or donating money to Black causes and organizations.
These are not just actions for today or tomorrow. These are actions for every day of our lives. To be in a constant motion of listening, learning, adapting, and disrupting.
The work of talented creators in our own community who are speaking out:
- Annette Richmond
- Ashley Renne
- Deesha Dyer
- Gabby Beckford
- Iliah Grant
- Monique Melton
- Olivia Christine
- Oneika Raymond
- The Bail Project
- Black Lives Matter
- Black Visions Collective
- Loveland Foundation
- Minnesota Freedom Fund
- NAACP Legal Defense Fund
- 10 Steps to Non-Optical Allyship by Mireille Cassandra Harper
- How to Make this Moment the Turning Point for Real Change by Barack Obama
- 5 Ways White People Can Take Action in Response to White and State-Sanctioned Violence by Showing Up for Racial Justice
- 75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice by Corinne Shutack
- Coming to Terms With Racism’s Inertia by Rachel Cargle (TED Talk)
- The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
- The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
- Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
- White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo
- Say Her Name by Zetta Elliott
- We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices by Wade Hudson and Cheryl Willis Hudson
- This Book Is Anti-Racist: 20 Lessons on How to Wake Up, Take Action, and Do the Work by Tiffany Jewell
- How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
- When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Asha Bandele
- White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack Peggy McIntosh
- Beloved by Toni Morrison
- Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color by Andrea Ritchie
- White Privilege: Essential Readings on the Other Side of Racism by Paula S. Rothenberg
- The Good Immigrant by Nikesh Shukla
- Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum
- A More Beautiful and Terrible History by Jeanne Theoharis
- The Fire This Time by Jesmyn Ward
- The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
With love and respect,
Founder and CEO, Wanderful