This weekend we wrapped production on a top-secret video shoot that will help launch our 2016 season. When we tell you that what's on the horizon is so bright, you better grab your shades now!

We expect the coming year to be radically transformational. We have ambitious plans to more than double our participation nu...

 

"Healing begins where the wound was made." -Alice Walker

We expect the coming year to be radically transformational. We have ambitious plans to more than double our participation numbers, train hundreds and hundreds of new women to serve on the front lines of the health crisis, and search to the farthest reaches of the universe to grab and release as much joy as possible.  But before we can get going with the big plans ahead, we must do three things.

 

1. Rest: It's officially the off-season! We've been grinding since March. It's been nonstop hustle. Now it's time to fill the Well back up.  For the next four weeks it will be all self-care, time with family, holiday parties, spiced cider, reading, resting and, of course, dreaming up big, bold, beautiful ways for GirlTrek to takeover the world!

 

2. Say Thank You:  There wasn't a day that went by in 2015 where we weren't grateful to be doing the extraordinary work of leading this movement.  Although there were many days this year where the responsibilities felt overwhelming, the losses felt bigger than the wins, the progress seemed to slow and we let frustration and doubt win, there was never a time where we failed to rally. We've always come back to a place of rock solid faith in GirlTrek as a powerful solution to the health crisis in our communities.  We were able to keep pushing and growing and ultimately succeeding because our village - you - our many supporters, partners, volunteers and friends rallied with us.  We want to take this moment to sincerely say thank you.  From the bottom of our hearts, we appreciate you. Thank you for helping to make GirlTrek come to life.

3. Reflect:  Baby!!!  What a year! In every way imaginable - we did that! The milestones! The achievements!  It doesn't matter who you ask, there is no denying that GirlTrek is one of the most successful health movements in the country.  It's easy to forget all of the amazing things that have happened in the past 11 months. Yes, only 11 months! That's why we've spent some time putting together a "By the Numbers" recap of 2015. We hope you enjoy reflecting back with us on an amazing year.

2015 By the Numbers

500

The number of volunteers who participated in GirlTrek's historic journey to Selma, Alabama.   We walk in the footsteps of a civil rights legacy and there's no way that we could let the historic 50th anniversary Selma to Montgomery bridge march pass without GirlTrek showing up and showing out in a major way.  March 7th we kicked off our 2015 season with a rally in the historic Carver Theater in Birmingham and then joined thousands of people in Selma for the march. This set the stage for what would be a truly amazing year for GirlTrek.


10:53am 

The exact time that First Lady Michelle Obama officially joined the #GirlTrek revolution by tweeting a special #GimmeFive Challenge. This isn't the first time Michelle Obama has experienced GirlTrek up close and personal and we guarantee you it won't be the last. 

 

9
The national media continues to take notice.  These are 9 of our favorite news stories from this year.
 
Chicago Tribune:  GirlTrek Goes to Selma 50
League of American Bicyclist:  GirlTrek Redefining Active Advocacy
10 

The average size of a Trek Team and we currently have more than 450 teams across the country. The fellowship and support in GirlTrek is powerful. You wake up together at the crack of dawn, you show up to each other's jobs, you call, text, cheer each other on...whatever it takes!

 

4

Pictures from this year that remind us that mothers as healthy role models has always been the answer.  #Mamathon

100 

The number of miles walked in June and at least the number of times the devil's been defeated by our good works.  After telling her doctor that she would have to delay her hip replacement surgery until after GirlTrek's 100-Mile June Challenge (#Priorities) we watched Koslyn Hunter from Pelham, Alabama battle her way back from the hospital bed to the pavement with a heart full of determination and her GirlTrek shirt on her back. Koslyn's story was one of many that kept us motivated this year. So many of you get out there and give it all you've got everyday. You inspire us!

28 

The age of Sandra Bland at her time of death.  Too many times this year we had to write one of those emails...Baltimore, the Charleston 9, Sandy.  Too many times this year we were reminded that this world does not see us worthy of life and that our walking is activism, our joy is resistance and our work together brings healing during times of deep pain. Today we still #SayHerName

1

Special moment when an interaction between a Philly cop and a GirlTrekker restored our faith in humanity.

8:00am  

The time of our morning prayer calls during the 9-Day Prayer Trek. Thousands of women pray for us everyday. Please continue to lift us up. The real work is still ahead. 

 

36,082 

The number of people who tuned in to the live stream of GirlTrek introducing the U.S. Surgeon General's National Call to Action on Walking.

2

Times the trekking felt so good we just had to stop and break it all the way down.

35:41

The fastest time recorded for the 4-mile speed trek during #AdrenalineAugust. Oh, the controversy! Folks wanted us to submit receipts for this one and we did.  Shout out to Balena Ali in Newark for hustling so hard!  Oh, and shout out to all of the women who inspire us daily with your #SweatieSelfies .  This is what hustle looks like!

52

Number of weekends in a year and number of weekends in which we can guarantee you there's a dedicated volunteer somewhere in the country setting up her GirlTrek table with her blue table cloth and her clipboard in hand, ready to recruit new women to the movement.

12,983

Times #SuperheroSaturday has been used as a hashtag on Instagram. We are the heroes of our communities! 

153

The number of organizers in training that packed bags, boarded planes and joined GirlTrek in Colorado for "The Mountaintop", GirlTrek's grassroots leadership training.  They studied, practiced, planned and committed, and we can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt that these are the women who are going to lead a health revolution on the ground in their neighborhoods.  These are the next Fannie Lou Hamer's - passionate, unafraid and prepared to do the work.  In 2016 we will train an additional 800 women and together our army of foot soldiers will be unstoppable!

79

Women who if asked would tell you that Chicago hustles harder. Although were guessing there's at least a few cities out there who think differently! 

 14

Times Vanessa or Morgan were speakers at major conferences and events. From Partnership for a Healthier America to the National Association of Black Journalist convention to TedMed we try our very best to represent this movement on a national level and do you all proud.

 $80

The cost of a National Park annual pass.  We put ours to good use this year! Thousands of feet of elevation gain, hundreds of miles trekked, countless trailhead talks and lives forever changed. 

 23

Number of family members Onika in New Orleans had participating in her family turkey trot for this year's Gratitude Trek.  GirlTrek is creating new, healthier traditions for Black families!

 Countless

Joy Jumps... 

...and Victory Bridges

 ...and #GirlTrelGlows captured

 ...and little girls inspired!

 and lastly,

2 hearts filled with love
Wishing everyone a joyous end to the year and a hopeful start to 2016. #BestisYettoCome #GirlTrek 
Your sisters, 
Vanessa and Morgan 

Check out Full GirlTrek calendar here