As you all know, Seize Your Adventure is an independent podcast run by me, in my bedroom with no budget. It is small. It is niche.
But it is also one of the few epilepsy podcasts available. It is the main platform devoted to the crossover between epilepsy and adventure.
It is a responsibility and a trust that I do not take lightly. So I think it is important to make this statement:
I've said many times that everyone's epilepsy story is different. And I know, and want everyone to acknowledge, that some people's epilepsy stories are shaped and made more difficult by their race. This is something I am aware of, but need to learn more about.
And as an adventure podcaster, I know there is also a severe lack of diversity and inclusion within the outdoor community. It is predominantly white, middle class, able bodied and male. I have said it before - you have to have a certain amount of privilege to 'adventure' in the traditional sense. I will do more to think about how we got here, and how we can change it.
I have tried to counter this by actively following diverse accounts on social media, and listening to a range of perspectives on podcasts and in the articles I read (I've put together a few lists of the things I've been reading and listening to over the past few weeks, and years).
With the things that I felt I could not talk about - LGBTQ+ experiences, different health conditions, race - I always try to highlight other accounts that are doing fantastic work in both the outdoor community and the epilepsy community (you can also some accounts to follow in the Instagram stories).
And I have tried to represent the diversity there is within my own niche. I'm going to be honest, finding people from the intersection of epilepsy and adventure is hard... finding POC from the intersection of adventure, epilepsy is even harder.
But I will keep trying harder.
To continue researching how epilepsy disproportionately affects POC, and share my research
To continue to search for a more diverse range of guests, working with them to shape their own episodes
I will not promote or work with groups or companies who do not have diversity and inclusion initiatives - and understand this may mean losing work
Continue working with friends to build up companies and individuals doing great work
I will carry this beyond Seize Your Adventure into my personal and future work
Diversity and equality is not a sprint. We all need to keep this energy going. It will be hard, but totally worth it because diversity matters. Inclusion matters. Black Lives Matter.
- Fran Turauskis