KISH: Tell us about you…
About Me: My name is Oluwatoyin – I go by Toyin for short, and Da Vinci is my blogging pen name. I’m half Nigerian and half Ghanaian, but I was born in England and raised in Atlanta, so I consider myself a multicultural peach. I’ve been blogging since 2007, but recently I decided to go on an RV adventure and hopefully travel to all 50 states eventually. I’ve always had a love for nature and the outdoors and this love inspired me to launch a social network and app for Black women called Outdoorsy Black Women.
KISH: What is your dream and how will accomplishing your dream benefit you and others?
Davinci: My dream is for Outdoorsy Black Women to bring all kinds of Black women together. I want this social community to be a safe space for us to learn, encourage and inspire each other to do outdoorsy things. I know that accomplishing this goal will allow for more Black women to be represented in the outdoors and change our perception of what it means to be outdoorsy. We deserve to enjoy and embrace nature in our own way.
KISH: Who or what inspired you to pursue this dream?
Davinci: As I prepared for my RV adventure, I discovered Black women doing all sorts of outdoorsy activities – surfing, fishing, camping, hiking, beekeeping and so much more. But I also realized that not a lot of my people know that we are doing these things. I was inspired to create a space where we could come together and just celebrate each other and see each other doing dope outdoorsy stuff.
KISH: What challenges have you encountered while pursuing your dream?
Davinci: I would say it’s a challenge when you’re dealing with white people who don’t understand why we need or deserve safe spaces of our own. I’ve dealt with threats to report my Black Women Camp group on FB for discrimination, and ugly things have been said about me wanting to keep Outdoorsy Black Women for US. The other challenge is having to gatekeep the communities because of people like that. But I know that in order to keep the space the way we need it to be, it’s something that has to be done.
KISH: Who or what inspired you to keep pushing regardless of the challenges you’ve encountered?
Davinci: Honestly, when members thank me for the work I’ve done to verify memberships one by one and keep Outdoorsy Black Women safe for them… that’s all the inspiration I need to keep going. It lets me know that I’m going in the right direction. At the end of the day, Outdoorsy Black Women isn’t for anyone but US, so if we’re happy with it, then that’s all that matters. I look forward to seeing the community grow and evolve into amazing things.
KISH: Please provide final thoughts/advice for others by finishing this sentence… dream.
Davinci: Don’t be afraid to follow your dreams, even if not everyone understands your vision.
Website links: outdoorsyblackwomen.com and yourlifeafter25.com
Social media: IG-outdoorsyblackwomen
IG and Twitter: yourlifeafter25