About Us

What is Climbing for Kids?

Climbing for Kids is a fundraising challenge that supports Bay Area Wilderness Training (BAWT), a nonprofit organization that gets at-risk and underserved youth out of the city and into the wild. BAWT is a project of the Earth Island Institute, a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation founded by environmental activist and climber David Brower.

By joining Climbing For Kids, for every $1,000 you raise, an average of 17 youth will have the unique opportunity to enjoy the wilderness with experienced adult trip leaders and top-of-the-line outdoor gear. Best of all, you’ll be making a serious difference in the lives of Bay Area youth, many of whom have had little sustained contact with the natural environment.

BAWT’s Mission Statement

BAWT’s mission is to create equitable access to outdoor experiences for youth of color and low-income youth.

Vision Statement

Bay Area Wilderness Training envisions a generation of social and environmental leaders, inspired by positive and meaningful experiences in nature, who reflect the diversity of our local community


Three values guide BAWT’s work:

  • Social Justice
  • Environmental Stewardship
  • Community Empowerment

BAWT currently serves the nine counties of the San Francisco Bay Area. We hope other organizations will take our vision and provide similar services to underserved youth in the rest of the state, country and across the world.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement

In alignment with our Value of Social Justice, Bay Area Wilderness Training is an environmental and social justice organization committed to dismantling racism, sexism, classism, and other forms of oppression that stand in the way of all people fully participating in outdoor activities. We believe that people visiting the outdoors should be represented by the full diversity of races, genders, income levels, and other identities that exist in the San Francisco Bay Area. To create more equity and increase access to the outdoors for traditionally underrepresented communities, we prioritize services for low income youth and youth of color. We work to ensure that our programs, organizational practices, and partnerships are inclusive and support these ideals and priorities.

Our supporters

Each year, thousands of youth experience the outdoors through Bay Area Wilderness Training’s programs. This work would not be possible without the help of individual donors. This includes our Climbing for Kids fundraiser’s climbers and their supporters. Over 90% of revenues are used towards program support, development and fundraising.

Thank you to all of our individual donors, corporate supporters, and foundations. We could not have reached all these youth without your generous support.

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