WHEN Josh Adeyemi first moved to Edinburgh from Nigeria 10 years ago, he admits he thought the capital was the main thing Scotland had to offer.

“I think just because you’re living in Edinburgh you think that’s it, you think that’s Scotland but then your fortunate enough to get out and about in the wilderness and it takes your breath away”, he told The National.

In April 2022, Adeyemi co-founded Black Scottish Adventurers – a community led organisation which encourages ethnic minorities to connect with wild spaces.

The group, which boasts around 1000 members, heads out on adventures all over the country.

The National: The organisation has thousands of membersThe organisation has thousands of members (Image: Black Scottish Adventurers)

He explained: “I had been connecting with wild spaces for a long time and it benefitted me significantly but I noticed a lack of representation within this community.

“Every time I would go out, my friends would always say they wanted to come along with me and after lockdown I thought it would be a good time to get a community together again.

“We organised the first group hike and branded as Black Scottish Adventurers in 2022. Most times we head out now we have around 100 people with us.”

More than 20 nationalities are represented in the organisation, with Adeyemi being named overall champion at the Scottish Walking Awards for his work earlier this year.

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“Our access rights here in Scotland are world class and I don’t think a lot of people are aware of that,” Adeyemi added.

“Most ethnic minorities come here and they want a good life so it’s great for us to show what Scotland can offer them.

“We look at how the environment impacts people’s daily lives – it’s about connecting people and getting them outdoors.

“I also think it helps to remove social pressure and eliminate loneliness within the community.”

The National: The group travels all over ScotlandThe group travels all over Scotland (Image: Black Scottish Adventurers)

The group’s next adventure will see them head to Montrose but they try to make things as diverse as possible.

Adeyemi has to think for a minute when pressed on his favourite location to visit in Scotland but eventually settles on one in particular.

“I love the mountains so Glencoe (below) and Fort William ticks that box for me. It really does just take your breath away”, he said.

Importantly, Adeyemi hopes that the connection he helps people to forge with the outdoors is one that will last a lifetime, even if it’s not always in Scotland.

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“There’s a huge influx of ethnic minorities come to Scotland, to study and do all sorts. We’ve made really big strides in the community.

“We’re connecting these folks today and it doesn’t mean tomorrow they’ll continue to be with us. They might move somewhere else but we’ve got them interested in the first place.

“I think that element of representation is what has helped make us popular and the more people we get outdoors the more people you have looking after it.

“But the main thing we always like to say is that everyone is welcome.”